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SMOLINSKI EYES SGP COMEBACK BID

Martin Smolinski is determined to make up for missing out on SGP 2020 by fighting his way back into the FIM Speedway Grand Prix elite.

21 / 02 / 2021, 12:41

German ace Martin Smolinski is determined to make up for missing out on SGP 2020 by fighting his way back into the FIM Speedway Grand Prix elite.

Smolinski was due to compete in last year’s World Championship after replacing the retired Greg Hancock, but suffered a badly broken hip and nerve damage in a training crash in Leipzig last May.

He was forced to sit out the action when the season eventually got underway, but the Bavarian is on the road to recovery and determined to go racing.

I would love to join Speedway Grand Prix again. For me, it was a big disappointment that I couldn’t ride in it last year. I did the work and made it in when Greg Hancock retired, but I couldn’t compete when I had the chance because of my injury.

Martin Smolinski

Smolinski is ready to chase a spot at this year’s GP Challenge in Zarnovica on August 21 where three SGP 2022 spots will be up for grabs. But first he will have to fight his way through one of the qualifiers in Abensberg, Glasgow, Lamothe Landerron or Gorican.

The 2014 New Zealand SGP winner said: “It looks like I will do the Speedway Grand Prix qualifying rounds again. I asked for a spot in the round at Abensberg. The GP Challenge this year is at Zarnovica. That’s a good track. I went there some years ago.

“I would love to join Speedway Grand Prix again. For me, it was a big disappointment that I couldn’t ride in it last year. I did the work and made it in when Greg Hancock retired, but I couldn’t compete when I had the chance because of my injury.

“That’s racing. That’s how it is. We have to accept it. But when one door closes, the next one opens. I will always fight hard to be back where I want to be.”

Another option open to Smolinski is earning a place in the Speedway European Championship and winning an automatic SGP spot by lifting the title, just as Robert Lambert did in 2020.

“The European Championship is another way to get in there,” Smolinski said. “I will go to the qualifying rounds for that I think – it depends what the German federation does. We don’t know yet. It’s a possibility I could do it this way too.

“But the GP Challenge is also a possibility. I’ve made it that way before, so we will see what happens.”

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