Tai Woffinden finished 2017 in strong form and he took that form into the season’s opening event in Poland last time out. A last-place finish in heat 7 was the only real blot on his copybook, which stopped him topping the scoring charts as well. He went badly at Prague’s Marketa Stadium in 2017 but expect him to be amongst the frontrunners again this year.
Our tip in Poland, Freddie Lindgren, may have been edged out in the final heat shootout, but that didn’t stop him leaving the PGE National Stadium leading the scoring charts. He collected four race wins in the season opener, and although like Woffinden he didn’t go well in Prague last season, his domestic form remains excellent, so expect him to be around the top scorers.
Poland’s Maciej Janowski was runner-up in his home event. He collected 13 points despite only winning one of his heats, and he followed up his efforts with a 15-point maximum domestically three days later. He is another rider looking to improve on his 2017 performance in Prague, not even making the semi-finals here last season.
Artem Laguta was a big surprise in Poland. The Russian has not been on the SGP roster since 2011 but posted four heat wins to reach the final in an excellent return. The 27-year old is remaining realistic in his expectations, just looking to collect points rather than target podiums, but his form in the opening event was quite the eye-opener.
The biggest shock in the Poland meeting was the form of Jason Doyle, who posted only five points, an unexpectedly bad return. He was disqualified from the opening heat and never recovered. Doyle will be determined not to slip up in Prague, an event that he won in 2017 despite only completing six of his seven rides.
Veteran Greg Hancock posted 18 points here in 2017. The multi-time champion was just edged out of a semi-final place in Poland, collecting one win and eight points. If he's even nearly as fast as he was here last season, he might show that there is life in the old dog yet.
Chris Holder, Patryk Dudek, Matej Zagar and Bartosz Zmarzlik were all beaten in the semi-finals in Poland. Dudek took a knock in heat 12 so may not be fully fit going to Prague, while Holder has still to find form domestically.
Poland provided many incidents, with plenty of action for the reserves courtesy of shunts for Doyle, Dudek, Emil Sayfutdinov and Nicki Pedersen. The veteran Dane is now nursing a broken hand and out of action for the immediate future. With Martin Vaculik still not cleared for a return after an injury in April at Leicester, Krzysztof Kasprzak took full advantage of his wild card and we wait to see if he will get the chance to repeat the feat in Prague.
This could be an unpredictable meeting, considering the disappointing start to the season many of the strongest riders had in Poland, but we expect Freddie Lindgren to get his first SGP event win under his belt.
Sports.net’s Top Tip:
Freddie Lindgren to win