European Championships - Poland

(2004 Web-site Archive)

The Poles dominated the weekend, providing all 16 finalists in the Junior Individual and 13 finalists in the Senior Individual, both at Bydgoszcz, and winning both Junior and Senior Team Cups. Best performance by England was in the Senior Team Cup at Bydgoszcz which went to a last race decider before Poland won by 1 point.

The whole weekend was a tremendous advertisement for the sport, with big crowds and a great atmosphere throughout. A hectic programme of racing was held over three days, using six tracks centred on Bydgoszcz. The Poles have continued to improve and they now have tremendous strength in depth, with only England's top seniors able to match them in the Senior Team Cup.

The Senior Team Cup was a great match, ridden on a new large, wet and heavy track following a heavy downpour of rain. The speed and passing ability of Leszno riders maximum man Marcin Szymanski and Mateusz Szymczak in that match had to be seen to be believed. England pair of Dave Hemsley and Shaun Woodhouse were both in great form in the Senior Team Cup, both losing only to Marcin Szymanski, but surprisingly both were eliminated in the semi-final of the Senior Individuals. Newport youngster Ryan Jones put in a great performance in this match for Wales. 30 minutes highlights of the Senior Team Cup were shown on Polish television later that evening. Bydgoszcz's Damian Zareba was a most worthy winner of the European Senior Individual Final.

Poland ran out easy winners in the Junior Team Cup, the 2nd half of which was ridden in torrential rain. Six Polish riders battled it out for the top places in the Junior Individual Final, with Lukasz Jozwiak unlucky to snap a bottom bracket in his last race, depriving him of the chance of a run-off for 1st place. Slesin's Remi Burchardt defeated team mate Denis Augustynski in a run-off for the title.

On this showing, the rest of the world have a great deal of work to do to catch up with Poland at cycle speedway. There was some excellent refereeing from the Polish officials, with none of the controversy that was a feature of last year’s World Championships.

Senior Individual Final at Bydgoszcz Przylesie:

1st - Damian Zareba (Bydgoszcz) 19; 2nd - Marcin Szymanski (Leszno) 18; 3rd - Mateusz Szymczak (Leszno) 17.

L. Nowacki (Rawicz / Horspath) 16, K. Kowalski (Torun) 16, P. Kwapich (Gniezno) 15, R. Dulinski (Torun) 13, K. Szymanski (Bydgoszcz / Horspath) 12, S. Harris (Horspath) 11, M. Skowronek (Leszno) 11, P. Binkowski (Torun / Astley & Tyldesley) 10, L. Galley (Southampton) 9, L. Aris (Wednesfield) 9, M. Szwajorek (Czestochowa) 8, R. Bedra (Bydgoszcz) 7, D. Rycharski (Czestochowa / Coventry) 6.

Referee - Andrzej Latusek (Ostrow).

Junior Individual Final at Bydgoszcz Przylesie:

1st - Remigiusz Burchardt (Slesin) 18; 2nd - Denis Augustynski (Slesin) 18; 3rd - Artur Poprawski (Rawicz) 17.

K. Majer (Slesin) 16, K. Bartkowiak (Rybnik) 15, L. Jozwiak (Bydgoszcz) 14, S. Wawryzniak (Slesin) 12, K. Wenzel (Rawicz) 12, M. Malolepsy (Czestochowa) 12, M. Pronobis (Swietochlowice) 11, M. Kolata (Ostrow) 10, M. Paradzinski (Torun) 9, A. Hasinski (Rybnik) 9, T. Badura (Poledowo) 8, D. Musial (Poniec) 7, D. Kuklewski (Czestochowa) 7.

Referee - Dariusz Wychodil (Wroclaw).

Senior Team Cup at Bydgoszcz Przylesie:

Poland 68 England 67 Wales 45 Holland 34 Ireland 29.

Poland: M. Szymanski 20, K. Szymanski 19, R. Bedra 13, M. Szymczak 10, K. Kowalski 6.

England: S. Woodhouse 19, D. Hemsley 19, L. Aris 16, P. Howells 13, L. Galley DNR.

Wales: R. Jones 14, D. Murphy 12, A. Busby 10, D. Harper 9.

Holland: M. Ijkema 9, C. Vogel 9, R. Van Der Tas 9, J. Koudijs 7.

Ireland: G. Colby 12, J. Murphy 10, J. McLaughlin 7.

Referee - Oskar Baldys (Leszno).

Junior Team Cup at Slesin:

Poland 98 England 76.

Poland: A. Poprawski 17 (1), M. Paradzinski 16 (3), S. Wawrzyniak 16, R. Burchardt 15 (1), K. Majer 13 (3), K. Bielica 8, K. Bartkowiak 7 (1), M. Malolepsy 6 (1).

England: D. Pike 15 (1), B. Scranage 15, C. Osborne 11 (2), L. Osborne 11, L. Webster 8 (1), C. Eaton 7, R. Bartram 6, B. Donohue 3.

Referee - Mike Hack (Astley & Tyldesley).


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