DUDEK HAILS WARSAW ROAR
World Championship leader Patryk Dudek paid tribute to the Polish fans for lifting him in Warsaw as he went through the pain barrier.
20 / 05 / 2019, 12:51
World Championship leader Patryk Dudek paid tribute to the Polish fans for lifting him in Warsaw as he went through the pain barrier to top the standings on Saturday.
The Zielona Gora and Dackarna rider has been in the wars lately. His 2018 season was ended by a broken arm and he was left battered and bruised after crashing in a PGE Ekstraliga match on May 10.
Dudek suffered a frightening fall at PGE Narodowy too. He was straightened up in a tight first turn and struggled to get off his bike as it careered into the air fence in race 14.
This is the feeling we love as athletes, so a big thanks and a bravo for the fans. I hope the Warsaw SGP is always the opening round of Speedway Grand Prix.
His name thundered across the stadium as the Warsaw crowd implored him to get to his feet. He did – and promptly won the re-run. Dudek was also given a rousing reception ahead of the final, which saw him finish third behind Leon Madsen and Freddie Lindgren.
One of the world’s great speedway atmospheres brought the best out of Dudek and he hailed a passionate home crowd.
He said: “Before the last heat it was an amazing feeling. Before the final I was thinking, ‘yeah, that sounds good, but it will be better if I win the race.’ It was amazing to hear them, though.
“This is the feeling we love as athletes, so a big thanks and a bravo for the fans. I hope the Warsaw SGP is always the opening round of Speedway Grand Prix.”
Dudek, who scored 16 points, declared himself fit after the fall. “Now I feel okay,” he said.
“It’s important I have no broken hands or anything like that. I have some pain in the hip, but it’s okay.”
After taking up top spot in the World Championship, Dudek would love to stay there after the Slovenian SGP on June 1.
The Bydgoszcz-born racer won at Krsko in 2018 and hopes to keep his strong start to 2019 going.
He said: “It’s always important to score points. I was in third place but I scored more points, so I’m in first, which is crazy.
“There are nine rounds to go so it’s hard to say what will happen now. I am at the top, but we’ll see what happens after Krsko. Maybe I will stay there; we will see.
“We haven’t had practice in Krsko and both times I have been in the final, so that’s not bad.”