ZMARZLIK: NEW BOYS IN MEDAL RACE
Polish shooting star Bartosz Zmarzlik believes SGP newcomers Patryk Dudek, Martin Vaculik and Emil Sayfutdinov are all capable of rostrum finishes in 2017 as he targets at least a top-eight spot.
Zmarzlik has been widely tipped as Poland’s next world champion and enhanced that reputation by earning third place in this year’s World Championship.
But the Monster Energy FIM Speedway World Cup winner knows staying in the world’s top three in one of the most competitive SGP series in recent memory will be no easy task.
"Next year's series promises to be extremely interesting. Dudek, Sayfutdinov and Vaculik are coming in and each of these riders can win a medal."
- Bartosz Zmarzlik
He told Sportowefakty.pl: “Again, I'm going to approach next season relaxed, because that helped me pass the test in 2016.
“The plan is to at least stay in the top eight. Anything above that will be a success. It is impossible to win medals every year.
“Next year's series promises to be extremely interesting. Dudek, Sayfutdinov and Vaculik are coming in and each of these riders can win a medal.”
Zmarzlik says becoming a World Championship bronze medallist hasn’t changed his outlook on the sport.
He said: “I am the same man and do the same things. Maybe I am recognised in different places a little more. This, however, does not matter to me. But it is definitely enjoyable.”
The 21-year-old has plenty to look forward to in 2017, not least the PZM Warsaw FIM Speedway Grand Prix of Poland at PGE Narodowy on May 13.
Zmarzlik reached the semis this season, and he can’t wait for the buzz of racing in the national stadium again.
He said: “This is a unique event. The two previous Warsaw SGPs have made an electrifying impression on me. There were many moments that sent shivers down my spine. The stadium is also very impressive. I hope speedway stays in this place for as long as possible.”
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