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RIDER REVIEW | MATEJ ZAGAR

SpeedwayGP.com looks back at how the SGP class of 2018 fared. Today, we feature Matej Zagar.

24 / 11 / 2018, 10:01

SpeedwayGP.com looks back at how the SGP class of 2018 fared. Today, we feature Matej Zagar.

The Slovenian racer was unable to find his brilliant best form in the World Championship as he dropped to 10th in the standings, meaning he needed a permanent wild-card pick to retain his place for 2019. But as ever, Zagar produced his magic moments.

Despite a solid nine points in the season-opening BOLL Warsaw SGP, Zagar was unable to reach the semi-finals in any of the following four rounds, scoring 25 points in total to leave himself 11th in the standings.

But Zagar is usually a man who hits his stride in the second half of a season, and he roared into form at round six in Malilla.

The Ljubljana-born man raced to 11 points in his heats – winning three rides and claiming two third places to get back into the semis. He then triumphed in his semi to join Nicki Pedersen, Freddie Lindgren and Martin Vaculik in his first and only final of 2018.

Pedersen pipped him to victory in the Swedish forests, but the result lifted Zagar into ninth and within three points of the top eight.

A useful 11-point haul at the MIB Nordic Gorzow SGP helped his cause as he stayed within four of the qualification places there.

But disaster struck when Zagar sustained a severe concussion in a PGE Ekstraliga crash at Czestochowa on September 2, which ruled him out of his home event – the AZTORIN Slovenian SGP in Krsko.

No points earned from that event meant even a strong 12-pointer in Teterow couldn’t save him, before he finished the season with six in Torun - ending on 79 overall.

Had Zagar been able to race in his homeland, there is every chance he would have made it into the top eight.

But the 35-year-old will be chasing that and more when he returns to the line-up for SGP 2019.

 

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