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LAGUTA: IN IT TO WIN IT

Russian racer Artem Laguta insists he’s in the FIM Speedway Grand Prix series to win it next year after ending SGP 2018 in style.

18 / 10 / 2018, 10:00

Russian racer Artem Laguta insists he’s in the FIM Speedway Grand Prix series to win it next year after ending SGP 2018 in style.

The Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations winner crowned the year of his career to date by storming to sixth place in the World Championship after an astonishing 20-point haul at the Marian Rose Motoarena on October 6.

Laguta won his opening six races with an exhibition of gating and some sensational first turns, only for world champion Tai Woffinden to defeat him in the final and deny the Grudziadz rider the holy grail of a 21-point maximum.

For sure this result is special after having to fight to stay in the top eight – we finished sixth. But we are here in this game to win it. Second place is first loser.

Artem Laguta

It was still a night last year’s GP Challenge runner-up will never forget as he cemented his spot among the sport’s elite for another year.

But Laguta is determined to climb higher and build on his first SGP season since 2011. He said: “We have learned and this has given us a good lesson for the future.

“I feel one of the fastest in the world over the whole season, but sometimes the points don’t show that. We can work for the future, though.

“For sure this result is special after having to fight to stay in the top eight – we finished sixth. But we are here in this game to win it. Second place is first loser.

“I am happy with the whole season. I had a long break from the Grand Prix, but now I have shown I am ready to be here. I am looking forward to the future.

“I have very good people around me – a perfect team, mechanics and sponsors. We will still co-operate with our tuner Kowalski Racing and we look with hope to next year as well.”

Laguta admits some testing times helped him end the season with a career-best performance at the Torun SGP.

He said: “I cannot believe it. I scored 20 points and of course I would have liked to win – that’s what we’re racing for. But I am so happy.

“In the previous couple of rounds, we were struggling a little bit to get the best speed. The track conditions weren’t my favourite.

“We put a lot of effort into being as fast as we could at open tournaments in Gniezno, Grudziadz and Krakow. We tried all our engines and there’s no better way to try them than when there is no pressure on the meeting and you can still compete against the good guys.

“This gave us a lot of solutions with the speed. We know we have had the speed in the past, but weather conditions have changed a little bit and the track conditions changed. We needed a little more time and experience.

“It was a great way to finish the season in the Grand Prix, though, and we’re looking forward to something special next year as well.”

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