Super Swede Martin Haarahiltunen was the winner of the first day’s battle for the FIM Ice Speedway World Championship in Heerenveen on Saturday evening but it is German Johan Weber who leads the classification as the riders go into the final day of the title race on Sunday.
Both riders topped the qualifying races with 12 points each having dropped points only in Heat 7 when they both met and where Weber suffered a disqualification and Haarahiltunen retired. In the final it was the Swede who led from the start, but Weber overtook Simon on the third lap and will be satisfied with his second place which gives him a clear 3 point lead over Nikita Bogdanov who, along with the other MFR riders is unable to race this weekend due to the current Ukrainian conflict. Weber is now a clear favourite to become the first western ice racer to take the championship since ‘Posa’ Serenius in 2002
Haarahiltunen is now 9 points behind Weber and although he has a mathematical possibility of overhauling the German it would require a huge effort from the Swede and a disastrous meeting for Weber to achieve this. We shall know the answer on Sunday afternoon.
Harald Simon took third place in the Final with Wild Card Luca Bauer of Germany, riding on an Italian Licence in 4th position.
The Swedish riders were in contention through the meeting with Ove Ledstrum looking particularly fast taking 8 points from his first three outings but a fall and disqualification in his fourth race ended his racing for the night as he withdrew from his final race. Joakim Soderstrom was also in good form in his first World Championship meeting and missed qualification for the Final only on count back.
FULL Results Final 3 HERE
Racing on Sunday 03 April starts at 13.30.
Leading scorers after Final 3:
1.Johann Weber (Ger)-43 points
2.Nikita Bogdanov (MFR)-40
3.Martin Haarahiltunen (Swe)-34
4.Igor Kononov (MFR)-34
5.Dmitry Koltakov (MFR)-30
6.Dmitry Khomitsevich (MFR)-30
7.Dinar Valeev (MFR)-22
8.Lukas Hutla (Czech)-21
9.Jasper Iwema (Ned)-21
10.Ove Ledstrom (Swe)-20
11.Ivan Khuzhin (MFR)-20
12.Harald Simon (Aus)-16
13.Luca Bauer (Ger)-14