Danish Star Prepares for Australian Speedway Title Challenge
Danish International, Charlie Gjedde, will celebrate his 25th birthday as he arrives in Australia on December 28 to prepare for one of the biggest challenges of his young career, becoming the first international rider allowed into the Australian Speedway Solo title in recent history.
The exciting Dane comes into the four round tournament full of confidence, utilising the Australian experience as a launching pad towards his main goal -- to secure a place as one of the sixteen select riders in the World Speedway Grand Prix Series in 2006. Gjedde (pronounced JED) has experienced SGP competition in 2003, competing as a Wildcard in the Danish Grand Prix of that year, impressing with a very solid performance. He also won the Elite League Pairs Championship this year with Leigh Adams, passing 2003 World Champion, Nicki Pedersen to secure the victory in the final heat.
"I had a taste of the Speedway Grand Prix back in 2003 at Denmark and it's something that I want to be a part of more and more," Gjedde said from a chilly Copenhagen as he prepared for Christmas with his family. "I mean the ultimate goal in this sport is to become World Champion, it is the pinnacle of the sport."
Unfortunately, Gjedde won't have the opportunity to benchmark himself against current World Champion, Jason Crump on Australian soil, who has elected not to compete in this season's title. Nevertheless, Gjedde will give Adams, his team-mate at the Swindon Robins in the British Elite League, a run for his money. Whilst the World number four will be working towards his seventh Australian Title, he has been instrumental in gaining Gjedde a place in this year's expanded Australian Championship field and will not treat the soon-to-be 25 year old with any complacency.
"I have ridden with Charlie a lot and he's one of the brightest young talents in the world," said Adams. "He is desperate to make it into the World Championship and the commitment that he is showing to come to do the Australian title this summer is quite phenomenal. There are a lot of people who are taking notice of him now and he has a sensational attitude towards the sport."
Gjedde will bring his GM engines from Denmark and will ride a Speedway Racing News Magazine sponsored frame that was used to great effect by former Australian international, Todd Wiltshire, in the 2003 World Championship. Gjedde will be based on the New South Wales Central Coast throughout his first visit to Australia.
"I cannot wait to arrive in Australia, I am looking forward to catching a bit of sun while I'm there," the affable Dane enthused. "I am lead to believe that there are some nice beaches and nice countryside right near where I will be based, however I won't be getting too caught up in that, I have only one goal and that is to return home with the Australian Championship."
The Australian Speedway Motorcycle Championship begins at Gosford Showground on December 29. Gjedde will be joined by British rider, Adam Allott as the only foreign riders in the 2005 Australian Championship, the first time that foreigners have been allowed to compete in this Championship in some time. The four round calendar is as follows:
Round 1: December 29 - Gosford Showground Speedway, Gosford, NSW
Round 2: January 1 -- Newcastle Showground Speedway, Broadmeadow, NSW
Round 3: January 5 -- Gillman Speedway, Adelaide, SA
Round 4: January 8 -- Olympic Park, Mildura, Vic