COOK: I WON'T GIVE UP
Determined Craig Cook insisted “I’m not going to throw the towel in” as he searches for the speed needed to mix it on the big stage.
14 / 06 / 2018, 12:54
Determined British star Craig Cook insisted “I’m not going to throw the towel in” as he searches for the speed needed to mix it on the big stage.
The Cumbrian finished third at the British Championship Final in Manchester on Monday, with Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations star Robert Lambert claiming the title courtesy of a six-ride maximum.
While Lambert is very much in the ascendancy, Cook has been struggling for pace this season.
I’d just like to thank everybody for their continued support. I am very, very persistent and I know it’s tough, but this is not getting me down.
The self-effacing Belle Vue and Rybnik man feels he is yet to reach the standard required of being an SGP rider. But he’s determined to do whatever it takes to hit top speed.
Speaking after the British Final, he said: “At the end of the day, I’m meant to be a Grand Prix rider and I have been failing at being that. That is where I want to be. With no disrespect to any of the guys in this championship, it’s not Grand Prix level. There’s maybe only Robert who is riding on that standard.
“I really need to figure things out and get myself going to that sort of standard. I don’t want to fail.
“It’s very frustrating for me. But I am persistent and dedicated to it. I’m not going to throw the towel in and give up. I’m working hard.”
Cook admits third spot in his national final was no disaster considering his setup struggles. He said: “Having felt everything is so bad, to finish third ... I have to take the positives from that. We’re going back to the drawing board to figure out how we can fix the problems we have.
“Speedway is all about consistency and having traction. Unfortunately, we’re having a lot of traction and then none at all.
“We’re really struggling with it. I feel I’m riding the bike to the best of my ability and I don’t seem to be able to put it where I need it to go. But I’m very persistent, so I’m sure I’m going to figure it out.
“I’m not disappointed with my performance on Monday and to be honest, Robert deserves it. I’m not disappointed about losing this trophy. All I can say is I will be back and I will be stronger.”
Cook paid tribute to those who have stuck with him through his struggles and refuses to let his own self-belief and desire drop.
He said: “I wouldn’t say I was riding without confidence on Monday because I am always confident in my ability. I know I can ride the bike. I did the best with the equipment I had.
“I tried everything with the setups etc to give myself the best and most consistent setup I could have. Unfortunately it just wasn’t enough and it seems to be the story of my season.
“From going out and scoring maximums last year to scoring twos and threes now and again is very frustrating for me. But I am persistent and I refuse to roll over and give in.
“I’d just like to thank everybody for their continued support. I am very, very persistent and I know it’s tough, but this is not getting me down.”