WATCH MELBOURNE 2016 REPLAY TONIGHT
Enjoy more SGP action on @SpeedwayGP Facebook and YouTube tonight as we replay the 2016 Australian SGP in Melbourne from 18:00 UK/19:00 CET.
30 / 05 / 2020, 11:01
Enjoy more FIM Speedway Grand Prix action on @SpeedwayGP Facebook and YouTube tonight as we replay the 2016 Australian SGP in Melbourne from 18:00 UK / 19:00 CET.
On a night packed with thrill, spills and no shortage of controversy, American legend Greg Hancock bid to close out world title No.4, while Tai Woffinden, Bartosz Zmarzlik and Chris Holder battled over silver and bronze.
The Melbourne crowd turned up at Etihad Stadium desperate to see an Aussie rider win Down Under for the first time. With a medal at stake, 2012 world champion Holder was keen to be the man to make history.
I’ll just score points, get to the semis and hopefully the final. Normally if you get through to the final, you get some good points, so anything could happen.
He had endured a rough time on the shale since lifting the sport’s biggest prize, enduring two years blighted by injury, before seeing close friend Darcy Ward’s career ended by serious spinal injuries in 2015.
Holder only just scraped qualification for SGP 2016 when he scored two points on a tough night at the first Melbourne event in October 2015. But with that assured this time around, he arrived at the Etihad chasing a place on the podium.
Speaking ahead of the meeting, fifth-placed Holder said: “It has been a rough ride since I became world champion. I’m slowly but surely getting back to where I want to be.
“This year has been quite good. It has only been the dodgy two GPs in the middle in Prague and Cardiff that cost me some pretty good points.
"Overall, I’m really happy with how I have scored.
“It’s a bonus, coming here and knowing it’s all sweet in terms of qualification. I just want to get a couple more positions up and have a much better one than I had here last time. I feel much better and everything feels good. There’s no reason why I shouldn’t.
“I’ll bang in the points in the heats and not look too much at what the others are doing. I’ll just score points, get to the semis and hopefully the final. Normally if you get through to the final, you get some good points, so anything could happen.”
With second-placed Jason Doyle’s season over due to a crash at the penultimate round in Torun, Hancock needed just three points to be crowned champion. While a modest target was unlikely to be a stretch for one of the all-time SGP greats, Hancock insisted he wouldn’t be letting up in Melbourne.
He said: “You know me. I’m here to win it on the track. I’m here to win this meeting. I want to be in the semi-finals and the final, and I want to be on the podium. Points are prizes and prize money to go with it.
“Everyone has a different way of looking at things, but I’m just trying to focus on winning the meeting. Of course I want to win the world title, though – that’s for sure.”
Relive the 2016 Australian SGP from 18:00 UK / 19:00 CET on @SpeedwayGP Facebook and YouTube.
PRE-MELBOURNE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS: 1 Greg Hancock 134, 2 Jason Doyle 123, 3 Tai Woffinden 115, 4 Bartosz Zmarzlik 113, 5 Chris Holder 109, 6 Piotr Pawlicki 91, 7 Maciej Janowski 85, 8 Fredrik Lindgren 82, 9 Niels-Kristian Iversen 79, 10 Matej Zagar 79, 11 Antonio Lindback 79, 12 Peter Kildemand 64, 13 Nicki Pedersen 62, 14 Andreas Jonsson 46, 15 Chris Harris 36, 16 Michael Jepsen Jensen 21, 17 Patryk Dudek 8, 18 Martin Smolinski 8, 19 Pawel Przedpelski 8, 20 Danny King 7, 21 Krzysztof Kasprzak 7, 22 Anders Thomsen 5, 23 Kim Nilsson 5, 24 Peter Ljung 4, 25 Vaclav Milik 3, 26 Tobias Kroner 2, 27 Denis Stojs 1, 28 Jacob Thorssell 1, 29 Nick Skorja 1, 30 Daniel Kaczmarek 1, 31 Kacper Woryna 1.