GREAT Britain’s speedway team are world champions – for the first time since 1989.
Youngsters Robert Lambert and Dan Bewley, both products of British Speedway’s National Development League, raced to victory in a dramatic grand final shootout against Poland in the Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations at a sold out National Speedway Stadium in Manchester.
Belle Vue racer Bewley was in for injured triple world champion Tai Woffinden who had crashed out of Day 1 of the final on Saturday.
After coming through the last chance race-off against Denmark, they knew avoiding last last place in the final would hand them the world title.
But in the first lap Bewley was at the back until Poland’s Maciej Janowski got in a tangle behind team mate Bartosz Zmarzlik and the British boys won the race 5-4.
The last time GB struck gold was in the World Team Cup Final in 1989 when none of this year’s winning team were born.
British Speedway Chairman Rob Godfrey said: “On behalf of the Board of directors of British Speedway Promoters Ltd, I would like to offer our sincere congratulations to the GB speedway team for this magnificent achievement.
“All four riders who represented our nation this weekend are products of our National Development League and have come through the leagues at Championship and Premiership level.
“After what has been a challenging two years for British Speedway, this is a fantastic boost for the sport and we couldn’t be more proud.
“We congratulate the management and the backroom team in the GB organisation and they can, to a person, all feel extremely proud.”
Lambert, meanwhile, says he will remember the winning moment for the rest of his life.
He said: “We have had a hard weekend with Tai getting injured. But obviously we had a strong guy to come into the team in Dan.
“I was born in 1998. It’s the first time in my lifetime that I have seen Great Britain as world champions, apart from Woffy being a world champion as an individual.
“It’s a great feeling and I am going to treasure this gold medal for as long as I live.
“We did it with such a young team as well. Me and Dan went out and did the business in the last race at such a high level against the two best Poles in the world. It’s such a great feeling for us and also GB. I am very, very proud of everyone involved.”
MONSTER ENERGY SON FINAL 1&2 COMBINED SCORES:
1 GREAT BRITAIN 64: Robert Lambert 32, Tai Woffinden 14, Dan Bewley 11, Tom Brennan 7.
Grand Final Qualifier: Lambert, Madsen, Bewley, Michelsen – GB win 6-3.
Grand Final: Zmarzlik, Lambert, Bewley, Janowski – GB win 5-4.
Photo Credit: IAN CHARLES