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SWC-Junior: Rory Schlein to compete in season finale

Rory Schlein to race in final of Speedway Junior World Championship Schlein's date with junior destiny The final of the 2004 Speedway Junior World Championship will be held in Wroclaw, Poland, on September 11, with Australia set to be ...

Rory Schlein to race in final of Speedway Junior World Championship
Schlein's date with junior destiny

The final of the 2004 Speedway Junior World Championship will be held in Wroclaw, Poland, on September 11, with Australia set to be represented for the first time in four years.

20-year-old Rory Schlein, who is a dual national junior speedway champion, will attempt to become the third Australian to win the world title after Leigh Adams in 1992 and Jason Crump in 1995.

The bespectacled South Australian, who weighs just 55kg, finished eighth in his semi-final in Austria on July 24, which was just enough to scrape into Saturday night's decider against a field dominated by Polish and Swedish competitors.

With six riders returning from last year's junior final, won by Poland's Jaroslaw Hampel, the heat will be on Schlein from the outset this weekend, with the likes of Antonio Lindback, Kenneth Bjerre, Robert Miskowiak, Matej Zagar and Fredrik Lindgren all bona-fide contenders to become the 17th world junior champion.

Bjerre, Zagar, Lindgren and Lindback have all scored points, as wildcards, in this year's top-tier Speedway World Championship, with the latter having already qualified as a permanent rider in the 2005 battle.

Despite the heralded opposition, Schlein has some pretty consistent form to appease the doomsayers, including a victory in this year's Scottish speedway title, as well as a series of consistent performances for Belle Vue (Elite League) and Edinburgh Monarchs (Premier League) in the 2004 UK domestic season.

The last Australians to see final's action in the junior world title were Travis McGowan and Kevin Doolan in 2000, when the duo finished 10th and 14th respectively.

-Motorcycling Australia

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