Crump Second in World Championshiip Opener Australian speedway star Jason Crump (Jawa) finished second in round one of the 2004 Speedway World Championship at Stockholm in Sweden on May 1 -- his best ever start to a new campaign. The ...
Crump Second in World Championshiip Opener
Australian speedway star Jason Crump (Jawa) finished second in round one of the 2004 Speedway World Championship at Stockholm in Sweden on May 1 -- his best ever start to a new campaign.
The 28-year-old, runner-up in the past three world championships, completed the four-lap final at the Olympic Stadium in Stockholm behind fellow Aussie Leigh Adams, after what was a productive night's work for the Northampton-based Aussie -- he never finished lower than second in his five races.
Crump's most nerve-wrecking outing was in the opening semi-final, where television replays were required to separate him from world number five, American Greg Hancock, in the joust for second. With only the top two riders advancing to the final, Crump eventually got through at the expense of Hancock -- continuing his record of making the final at every GP help at the 92-year-old Olympic Stadium.
"I'm happy because that's the best start I've ever made to a grand prix season," said Crump, an eight-time GP winner. "Before that, my best start was in 1999 when I was third in the opening round in the Czech Republic.
"Of course, the plan now is to maintain the momentum, and I'm confident I can do that in round two in Prague (Czech Republic) -- I have an excellent record at that particular circuit. And I've got a pretty light work load before the next GP, so I'll be raring to go by the time it comes around."
Crump secured 20pts for his round one second place, five in arrears of Adams (25). Behind Crump, five-time world champion Tony Rickardsson (18pts) was third in front of his home crowd, followed by veteran Polish rider Tomasz Gollob (16). Meanwhile, the quartet of defending world champion Nicki Pedersen (13pts), Hancock (13), Lee Richardson (11) and Jesper Jensen (11) was eliminated at the semi-final stage, while a third Australian, Ryan Sullivan, was 11th.
The second round of the world championship -- now celebrating its 10th year as a multi-round format - will be held at the Marketa Stadium in Prague on May 15 -- a return to the scene of Crump's most recent GP victory in round seven last year. The 1995 world under 21 champion also won at the dedicated speedway venue in 2002, setting the scene for what should be another thrilling encounter.
<pre> ROUND ONE RESULTS 1 Leigh Adams Australia 2 Jason Crump Australia 3 Tony Rickardsson Sweden 4 Tomasz Gollob Poland 5 Nicki Pedersen Denmark 6 Greg Hancock USA 7 Lee Richardson GB 8 Jesper Jensen Denmark 9 Mark Loram GB 10 Bjarne Pedersen Denmark
CURRENT STANDINGS (after one of nine rounds) 1 Adams 25 2 Crump 18 2 Rickardsson 18 4 Gollob 16 5 Nicki Pedersen 13 5 Greg Hancock 13 7 Richardson 11 7 Jensen 11 9 Loram 8 9 Bjarne Pedersen 8