After his surprise victory at the Bergring Arena in round nine, Matej Zagar followed up his success with victory in Stockholm last time out. This rich vein of form arrived far too late for a title challenge, but the Slovenian has now edged his way back into the top eight. He made it to the final of this event last year and, on current form, a hat-trick of back-to-back victories is not out of the equation.
Bartosz Zmarzlik came home second in Stockholm but, like Zagar, his eyes are firmly focussed on scoring well enough to retain his place in next year’s GP series. He too went well in this event last season, so a success here would not be completely unexpected.
The championship leader may not have claimed top spot on the podium in Sweden, but Jason Doyle comfortably outscored the other riders, beating the next highest scorer, Zagar, by a margin of five points. It is this consistency that has Doyle in pole position to take his first GP world title.
Peter Kildemand claimed fourth in Sweden. The Dane has been doing everything in his power to earn a spot in next year’s series since stepping in for injured veteran Nicki Pedersen in round two. An event victory seems unlikely, but his season’s efforts as a near season-long stand-in have been admirable and future event wins should not be out of the question.
The only remaining challengers to Jason Doyle’s lead had a disastrous event in round ten. None of the chasing pack even managed double-figure returns, meaning that the title is the Aussie’s to lose. Patryk Dudek remains in second spot, despite only posting six points. His form is mediocre at best, but the Poles are known to get a lift from their vociferous home support, so he will be hopeful of better points this time out.
Another home rider is third placed Maciej Janowski. Like Dudek, he will need to find second wind from the Polish fans if he is to hold on to a top three finish. His back-to-back wins in the summer are a distant memory and show that inconsistency has been his biggest downfall.
Tai Woffinden’s hopes were dashed in Sweden with starting issues, the lone British rider touching the tapes in both of his opening rides. Six points from his only three rides were not enough to get him into the semi-finals and he was left to count the cost of his mistakes. His form in general remains good and he may yet find himself another podium spot.
The GP title seems to be Jason Doyle’s for the taking, but it is worth remembering how this event went for him last year. Leading by two points going into the event, a crash in his opening race ended his season and his title aspirations. With a twenty-two point lead this time around, and the form riders being those in the middle of the pack, surely even such an unwanted event will not be enough to deny the Aussie his first crown.
Form is everything. Doyle needs only a handful of points to secure the championship ahead of the final event in Australia, so may not be too keen to risk it all at a circuit with such bad memories. Matej Zagar is on fire right now and with the fight well and truly on for next season’s GP spots he looks a strong bet for success.
- Sports.net’s Top Tip: Matej Zagar to win the GP of Poland
Please note that odds may fluctuate in the run-up to the event.