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Track Talk: Tai Woffinden can put one hand on world title

By Nigel Pearson | Speedway | Published:

Tai Woffinden, Britain’s finest, continues his quest for a third world title in Gorzow, Poland, tonight (6pm).

Tai Woffinden (centre) celebrates winning the Warsaw

Wolverhampton asset Woffinden sits 17 points clear in the title race with another Monmore hero Freddie Lindgren in second spot.

The Edward Jancarz Stadium always provides fast, throttle open action and I expect tonight to be no different in round seven of the series.

After tonight there will only be three rounds remaining and if Woffinden has a good night – which he has done before here – then he will have one hand on the title. He won’t admit that, mind.

Much could depend on Lindgren after his injuries sustained in a Polish League meeting last week.

He damaged hand muscles in Tarnow and has been having treatment throughout the week, which I sincerely hope won’t deny him a shot at the title.

Woffinden has done most things right in this series and he has tried to keep a cool head – until he expressed his frustration at Nicki Pedersen in Sweden a fortnight ago.

The biggest threat tonight will be from the Polish riders, in particularly brilliant Bartosz Zmarzlik, who is in his own back yard and won this Grand Prix previously.

It promises to be a thriller and it’s live on BT Sport tonight from 5.45pm with Kelvin Tatum and myself in the commentary box. In other news, we were delighted to find an Indian restaurant by the river here in Gorzow last year – so that’s tonight sorted after the meeting. I may even go vindaloo.

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There’s a big day of domestic action on Monday with Wolverhampton hosting Bank Holiday meetings with Belle Vue. They need to win both meetings in my view, at Manchester at 12pm and back at Monmore at 8pm. Two defeats and their play-off bid is over – that’s how big the meetings are!

I think it’s brilliant to see the club teaming up with Wolverhampton Council and seeing speedway banners around the city at places where you normally see adverts for comedians, live acts and kids entertainment. Great promoting.

I’m predicting a home win for both sides, but there should be some great speedway along the way.

I saw Jacob Thorssell having a pop at the Monday schedule because of his flight into Manchester Airport from Poland being so close to start time.

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While I understand JT’s view, he also needs to realise Bank Holidays are a potential earner for clubs in the UK during very difficult trading conditions.

The loss of TV revenue from the old Sky deal has been underestimated by many and has left huge gaps in clubs’ cash flow and business plan.

Here’s hoping for massive crowds all over the country on Monday.

Nigel Pearson

By Nigel Pearson
Columnist - @nigelpearson

Sports broadcaster/writer specialising in Football, Darts and Speedway for Sky Sports, IMG, BT Sport and talkSPORT.

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