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ZMARZLIK: POLAND'S SILVER SUCCESS

Polish skipper Bartosz Zmarzlik insisted silver was a success for his country in a tough Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Final.

19 / 10 / 2020, 12:26

Polish skipper Bartosz Zmarzlik insisted silver was a success for his country in a tough Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Final.

The hosts tied on 23 points with Russia in Lublin on Saturday, but the reigning champions bagged their third straight world title after winning the head-to-head between the teams in race eight.

Zmarzlik bagged 15 points while Gorzow team mate Szymon Wozniak impressed with eight on his Monster Energy SON debut.

Despite the difficult conditions, I wanted to win with the Polish team for our country. But silver is also a success looking at the lottery conditions of Saturday's racing.

Bartosz Zmarzlik

The competition was curtailed after 15 heats due to rain and the result was counted after 14 – when all seven sides had raced four heats apiece.

Had the meeting reached a conclusion, it’s possible the Poles would have claimed their first Monster Energy SON world title.

While Zmarzlik was gunning for gold, he was content with silver on a night when track conditions were far from ideal.

He told Przeglad Sportowy: “It is my nature that I always want to fight for the highest goals. The same was true on Saturday. Despite the difficult conditions, I wanted to win with the Polish team for our country. But silver is also a success looking at the lottery conditions of Saturday's racing. Let us really enjoy the result we have achieved.”

The meeting also marked the end of Marek Cieslak’s storied career as Polish team manager, which saw him win seven FIM Speedway World Cups.

Zmarzlik took his coach on a lap of honour at the end of the night. While Cieslak’s achievements will go down in history, the world champion admits motivating the riders was never tough.

He said: “The coach did not have to motivate us because we all know very well that we are racing for the Polish national team. Riding with an eagle on our chest is a sufficient motivation to win for Poland and the Polish fans.”

Photo: Taylor Lanning

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