The Bavarian town of Mühldorf is the setting for the second round of the 2022 FIM Long Track World Championship next weekend as the series returns to a traditional sand track after the first Final in Rzeszow, Poland was held at a speedway venue.

The draw for Sunday’s meeting can be found by following this link HERE

Leading the field after Final 1 is Dane Kenneth Kruse Hansen who relished the conditions in Poland where he rides for the local speedway team and won four of his five heats in the qualifying races. Highly regarded in Denmark, he was runner up in a recent European Long Track qualifier on the grass in Holsted. This confirmed his fitness and abilities on the regular track surfaces and if he is able to maintain this form through the series, he will be a contender for the title this year.

Stanislaw Burza is another who benefitted from his home track knowledge in Rzeszow to secure a podium place in Final 1. The only Polish rider in the field he has a speedway background but is relatively inexperienced in Long Track so could find it difficult to adapt to the varied surfaces he will find through the championship.

Third in the standings at the moment in Chris Harris, now approaching the veteran stage but still retaining his enthusiasm. A true racer and a favourite with the fans, he started his career on the grass tracks of his native Cornwall but has spent most of his career on the speedway tracks and has returned to his roots only recently. Machine problems have limited his progress in the Long Track championships until now but if he can put these behind him he could be a force to be reckoned with this year.

The big surprise from the first event was the failure of two World Champions to make their mark. Defending champion Romano Hummel had a disastrous meeting with several machine failures which included a blown motor. Lukas Fienhage also missed the cut after a heavy fall limited his points scoring. Both these riders will hope for better fortune and can be expected to produce results in line with their status. The other former champion, Mathieu Tresarrieu made a successful return after his temporary retirement in 2021 and took fourth position.

Veteran Dutchman Theo Pijper has been racing in this competition for over 20 years and proved that he still has his sights on a medal by finishing sixth in Poland. On his day he can beat the best and cannot be overlooked.

With Josef Franc still sidelined with a wrist injury it will be left to Martin Malek who is on good form recently and Hynek Stichauer currently in 9th place to cheer the travelling Czech fans and British supporters will look to Zach Wajtknecht and James Shanes, both former European champions, to produce better results in Bavaria. Franc is replaced by Dutchman Mika Meijer a recent qualifier for the European Championship Final if he is fit enough after injury. Finland’s Tero Aarnio will also be missing from the line up due to an injury in a recent Polish League meeting.

With the continued absence of Erik Riss and the injuries to Martin Smolinski and Max Dilger Germany’s recent superiority in Long Track is under threat. Wild card for this meeting will be local star Stephan Katt with Jörg Tebbe and Fabian Wachs Reserves.

Leading positions after Final 1: 1.Kenneth Kruse Hansen (Denmark), 21 ; 2. Stanislaw Burza (Poland), 19; 3. Chris Harris (Great Britain) 17; 4. Mathieu Tresarrieu (France), 15; 5. Martin Malek (Czech Rep), 13; 6. Theo Pijper (Netherlands), 11; 7. Tero Aarnio (Finland) 10; 8. Zach Wajtknecht (Great Britain), 9; 9. Hynek Stichauer (Czech Rep), 8;10 James Shanes (Great Britain), 7; 11 Lukas Fienhage (Germany), 5; 12 Jacob Bukhave (Denmark), 4; 13 Jörg Tebbe (Germany), 3; 14 Marcin Sekulla (Poland), 2; 15th Romano Hummel (Netherlands), 1.

Racing on the 970m sand track will start at 14.00 CET on Sunday. Thierry Bouin will be FIM Jury President and Pavel Kubes the Referee.

FIM/Graham Broodie