THIRD TIME LUCKY?
Sunday 30th September 2012, 16:56
Danish hotshot Niels-Kristian Iversen refuses to be overawed by the task of taking on speedway’s finest in the 2013 SGP series.
The 30-year-old has enjoyed the season of his life. He captained Denmark to FIM Monster Energy Speedway World Cup glory and has been one of the top performers in the British, Swedish, Polish and Danish leagues this season.
He also won his national title for the first time last month and it seemed only fitting that he ended his season by clinching third place in the GP Challenge at Gorican on Saturday to end his four-year absence from the permanent SGP field.
Like GP Challenge winner Krzysztof Kasprzak, who also bowed out of the series in 2008, Iversen feels he let the World Championship become a bigger stress than it needed to be.
And while the Esbjerg-born man is hungry for his third crack at the SGP big time, he is determined to take the series in his stride.
"Iâ€™m going to keep doing the same thing Iâ€™m doing now. Iâ€™m not going to make the Grand Prix anything bigger than what it is."
- Niels-Kristian Iversen
He said: “The statistics show I’ve been one of the best riders in the world this year in all the leagues.
“It has been good, but we start again next year and I’m going to keep doing the same thing I’m doing now. I’m not going to make the Grand Prix anything bigger than what it is.
"As Krzysztof was saying, you have to take it like a normal meeting. You can’t think you have to do something extra in the Grand Prix because it’s the same races and the same rules.
“I think if I continue next year like I have this season, I think 2013 will be alright. I’m not going to set myself any goals either. I’ll take every meeting as it comes.”
Iversen raced in the World Championship in 2006 and 2008, but goes into the 2013 series older and wiser.
“I’ve been in the Grand Prix twice before and I’ve got some experience from that,” he said. “I was a lot younger before, especially the first time in 2006.
“I probably made it bigger than it is. You think you need special engines and everything to be something extra. At the end of the day, that’s not what it’s about.
“I’m still going to try to do my best, and in the league racing as well. It’s in the leagues where you build your confidence. You have to carry that into the Grand Prix because it’s a tough game. You can finish with two points just as easily as you can finish with 12.
“That’s how tough it is. If it’s your day, you can be good, but then again, things might not happen.
“I’m just going to try to enjoy it. I’m not going to stress about it. I want to go there with an open mind and just try my best.”
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