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ANDERSEN UP FOR SGP BID

Danish ace Hans Andersen insists he hasn’t given up on his FIM Speedway Grand Prix ambitions as he targets a qualifying bid this year.

05 / 03 / 2018, 12:40

Danish ace Hans Andersen insists he hasn’t given up on his FIM Speedway Grand Prix ambitions as he targets a qualifying bid this year.

The Leicester star hasn’t raced in the World Championship since 2012 when he was called up as a wild card, finishing 10th overall. But he stormed to fifth spot in 2007 and 2008 and has four SGP wins to his name.

The 37-year-old double FIM Speedway World Cup winner still believes he has what it takes to beat the best riders in the world, but he knows earning the chance will be easier said than done.

I definitely think I can still mix it with the big boys and I’m looking at getting back into the Grand Prix. I know it’s different when you race the GP riders in the leagues, but I still beat them on a daily basis.

Hans Andersen

He said: “I definitely think I can still mix it with the big boys and I’m looking at getting back into the Grand Prix. I know it’s different when you race the GP riders in the leagues, but I still beat them on a daily basis.

“I’d like to give it another crack. Last time I was in it in 2012, I was thrown straight in after being out nearly the whole season with a leg injury. I would like to come in fresh and prepared for it.

“Qualifying is difficult, though. It’s probably easier to stay within the top eight than it is to qualify for the three Challenge spots.  Now you have people being given wild cards for the Challenge, even though they might have been knocked out earlier. It is a lot harder to get back in it than it was in the past.

“I rode in the GPs for quite some time, but now I’m older and more experienced.

"You can always look back and see things you would like to progress differently if you could do it again.”

Andersen believes a change of approach would benefit him if he secured qualification at the GP Challenge in Landshut this July. And that could involve giving practice day a miss.

He said: “In the past, I have probably put too much focus into the GPs. At the end of the day, it’s just a meeting like any other. Sometimes you can wear yourself out.

“The Saturday is a long day. You’re there from the day before and you can put too much thinking into that meeting, whereas with a league meeting, you fly in on the actual day. It is a mental thing. Sometimes you can be mentally tired if you spend too much time there before the meeting thinking about it.

“I see Emil Sayfutdinov didn’t practice for much of last season. Could that work for me? I think so. We’ve seen so many times when the track for the Saturday is hardly the same. It’s never, ever the same.

“I know some of the riders like to test their engines if they’ve just had them serviced to see if they’re okay. But everyone can feel fast when they ride alone. Sometimes practice just screws your head up a bit rather than you turning up fresh, kicking the track and making your mind up.

“You use the bikes you use in some of the leagues and if you’re quick in the leagues, why shouldn’t the bikes work at the GP as well?”

 

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