LAMBERT'S INJURY BATTLES
Great Britain star Robert Lambert is keen to get back to enjoying his racing this season after admitting injuries took their toll.
22 / 05 / 2020, 12:27
Great Britain star Robert Lambert is keen to get back to enjoying his racing this season after admitting injuries took their toll on his progress in 2019.
Last year’s SGP first reserve got his chance on the world stage after an impressive 2018 campaign and he started SGP 2019 with back-to-back semi-final appearances in Warsaw and Krsko.
But he endured a tough summer after a first-turn collision with GB team mate Craig Cook in their opening heat of the Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Final in Togliatti on July 20 left him with neck injuries.
When things do get going, I’ll just do what I can and the main thing is to enjoy my speedway. That was something which got a little bit lost last year. Maybe I was a bit too busy.
He was then caught up in a three-man pile-up with Leon Madsen and Anders Thomsen at a Speedway European Championship round in Torun a week later, sustaining back injuries.
Lambert accepts he should have taken some time off following the initial crash in Russia, and admits injuries didn’t help him find his best form.
Reflecting on the Togliatti crash, he said: “That messed my head up a little bit. I had concussion. Maybe I should have said there and then that I would take a couple of weeks off, but then a few meetings would have gone by and I wanted to get them done.
“That was a bit of a tough time, but we got through it. You need to have those moments in life and in your career to bounce back and come back stronger.
“You can race every night if you are scoring well and there are no injuries. But when things start going wrong, you need time to let your brain recover and your body as well; to think about and analyse things.
“Last year was obviously a tough year. Things weren’t going the way I wanted them to. A few things in the background were affecting me, but we have sorted those problems out and crossed them off.
“As I do every year, I am working hard on my fitness. This season just gone wasn’t the best for fitness. I had a few injuries and that got to me a bit. It led from one thing to another and it didn’t help. But I have a clear head now and I was really ready to rock at the beginning of the season. Now everything has been put on hold, which is a bit of a shame.”
Coronavirus restrictions may have delayed the season for Lambert and his fellow riders. But he was set for a quieter 2020 anyway as he didn’t qualify for the SGP series and is no longer eligible to race in the FIM Speedway Under-21 World Championship.
However much racing he does get this summer, he is keen to ensure he rides with a smile on his face.
He said: “When things do get going, I’ll just do what I can and the main thing is to enjoy my speedway. That was something which got a little bit lost last year. Maybe I was a bit too busy.
“Things have quietened down a bit now. I am still hoping get into the qualification rounds for next season’s GPs and this season’s SEC. Things have all changed, though, so the main focus of this year is to try and get some good racing in and enjoy the end of the year when we do race.
“Coming into the season, I was pretty relaxed and hopeful for the year; trying to not to set too many goals, but still set a few key ones. That’s very important. One goal is to enjoy the racing. That’s the reason I started and that’s what has carried me through to now. That’s how it should continue.”
Photo: Taylor Lanning