Menu
Card image cap

SWC SHAKE-UP FOR 2012

Sweden have been handed an automatic place in next year’s FIM Speedway World Cup Final in an exciting shake-up of the competition.

21 / 11 / 2011, 11:00

Sweden have been handed an automatic place in next year’s FIM Speedway World Cup Final after rights holders BSI Speedway and the governing body, the FIM, announced an exciting shake-up ahead of the 2012 competition.

The Swedes will bid to win the Ove Fundin Trophy for the first time since 2004 when they stage the SWC decider at Malilla’s G&B Arena on July 14, 2012.

But the battle to join Sweden in the meeting will be fiercer than ever as only the winner of next year’s SWC Race-Off will earn a place in the last four, alongside the top sides from Events One and Two.

The SWC competition will be expanded from eight countries to nine and teams will track just four riders instead of five, strengthening each nation and allowing them to leave out their weaker links.

The change in team size will see each meeting staged over 20 heats.

The final stages of next season's SWC competition kick off at Bydgoszcz on July 7, where host nation Poland will launch their bid to win a fourth straight SWC crown against Denmark and Russia.

The winners of the second qualification round at Slovenian venue Ljubljana on May 5, which features Slovenia, Italy, Finland and the United States, will complete the field.

Team Great Britain get their campaign underway at King’s Lynn on July 9 and take on Australia and the Czech Republic.

They will be joined by the winners of the first qualification meeting at German track Herxheim on April 22, where Germany meet France, Latvia and the Ukraine.

While the winners of Events One and Two join Sweden in the final, the second and third-placed teams from Bydgoszcz and King’s Lynn will collide in the Race-Off at Malilla on July 12.

In previous years, the top two nations from one of world speedway’s most cutthroat meetings have progressed into the final.

But this year’s Race-Off promises to be one of the most dramatic ever, as only the side finishing on top of the podium earns a shot at the Ove Fundin Trophy.

BSI Speedway managing director Paul Bellamy feels the changes to the SWC will make one of the most thrilling weeks in the world speedway calendar even more dramatic.

He said: “With each country picking just four riders, only the crème de la crème will make it into their national team and team managers will have quite a headache as they decide who to leave out.

“It will also give more nations a chance of fielding a strong team and making a push for the gold medals.

“I’m sure the Swedes will be delighted to see their team already assured of their place in the final. But the battle to join them should be incredible and with just one team qualifying from this year’s Race-Off, that meeting will be extra special.”

Roy Otto, director of the FIM CCP track racing commission, said: “I’m confident these changes will result in one of the most unpredictable SWC tournaments we have ever witnessed.

“The tournament has become one of the most hotly-anticipated events on the sport’s global calendar and we are delighted to play our part in its continued development.”

SWC FORMAT 2012:

SWC Qualifying Round 1
Herxheim, Germany, April 22
Germany v France v Ukraine v Latvia

SWC Qualifying Round 2
Ljubljana, Slovenia, May 5
Slovenia v Finland v Italy v USA

SWC Event 1
Bydgoszcz, Poland, July 7
Poland v Denmark v Russia v Winner QR 2

SWC Event 2
King’s Lynn, Great Britain, July 9
Great Britain v Australia v Czech Republic v Winner QR 1

SWC Race-Off
Malilla, Sweden, July 12
2nd and 3rd placed teams from Event 1
2nd and 3rd placed teams from Event 2

SWC Final
Malilla, Sweden, July 14
Sweden v Winner Event 1 v Winner Event 2 v Winner Race-Off

Card image cap

VIDEO | LAST YEAR IN MELBOURNE

FIM Speedway Grand Prix wins don't get bigger than this for Chris Holder. Here's how he won the 2016 QBE Insurance Australian SGP.

Card image cap

IVERSEN'S WILD AMBITION

Niels-Kristian Iversen hopes his status as Danish No.1 gives him the edge in the battle for an FIM Speedway Grand Prix wild card.

Card image cap

DREAM CALL-UP FOR DAVE

Aussie star Dave Watt bids farewell to the sport with a guaranteed five rides in the QBE Insurance Australian SGP on Saturday.

Card image cap

WARD: HOLDER WILL BOUNCE BACK

Darcy Ward backed good friend Chris Holder to regain top form in 2018 as he fights for SGP survival in Melbourne on Saturday.

Card image cap

PEDERSEN BACK IN SWEDEN

Danish racer Nicki Pedersen is back in the Swedish Elitserien for 2018 after joining newly-promoted Vastervik.

Card image cap

DOYLE: WEBBER'S WORDS OF WISDOM

Jason Doyle admits a pep talk from Mark Webber helped him through one of the most gruelling nights of his career as he chases SGP gold.

Card image cap

ELITSERIEN | MALILLA KEEP MAGIC

Polish star Maciej Janowski remains in Dackarna colours for 2018 after signing a fresh deal.

Card image cap

KILDEMAND'S SPRINT FINISH

Danish racer Peter Kildemand is pleased to be ending 2017 on a high as he prepares for the QBE Insurance Australian SGP in Melbourne.