Saturday evening at 6 pm the very first heat will be run at the newly-renovated Vojens Speedway Center. It is the third division - out of four - in the battle for the European Championship. The opening party at the iconic speedway arena will also give a strong indication of whether the defending champion, Leon Madsen, or perhaps Nicki Pedersen can take home the overall triumph.
By Ib Søby
With as many as six Danish riders to boot, Saturday's showdown can only become a regular speedway party, for those audiences looking forward to appearing in the stands - and the oblique greenery - to attend the start of the new era with Jacob Olsen as director and promoter.
Leon Madsen, Nicki Pedersen, Michael Jepsen Jensen, Mikkel Michelsen, Anders Thomsen and Peter Kildemand (wildcard) enter a fierce race, both against each other, but also against international world-class names such as Russian Grigory Laguta, Polish Jaroslaw Hampel and Swedish Antonio Lindbäck .
It is almost exactly five years ago that the last was an SEC EM round on Danish soil. It was in Holsted on August 9, 2014, when Russian Emil Saytfudinov won ahead of Peter Kildemand and the Slovak Martin Vaculik.
Since the Polish organizer One Sport took over the running of the European Championships in 2012 - in collaboration with FIM Europe - both the series and even the European Championship title have been given a huge boost and a far more significant importance in the international speedway environment. Although the Grand Prix World Cup series is the ultimate, but thanks to One Sports TV agreement with Eurosport, and thus transmission in over 70 countries, the European Championship Series has become extremely important.
In 2016 Nicki Pedersen saved his season with the European Championship title, and last year Leon Madsen achieved his international breakthrough by securing the title, thanks to a magnificent victory in the last division.
Speedway historically you can talk about three stages in the European Championship. Already in 1955, Norwegian Henry Andersen became the first European champion of sports, because in the years from 1955 to 1975 the European Championship title was part of the then qualification system, ahead of the annual World Cup final. That is why, for example, on the old European Championship list you can find New Zealand legend Ivan Mauger.
In 2001, FIM Europe - then the UEM series - resumed as an independent tournament with Czech Bohumil Brhel as champion. It was also under the auspices that Danish Jesper B. Monberg won in 2005. When One sport took over in 2012, it was oddly another check that won, namely Ales Dryml. In recent times, Emil Saytfudinov, Martin Vaclulik and Andrs Lebedevs have also been able to adorn themselves with the European Championship title.
The official title of the race is Speedway Euro Championship Ovethi - Danish Deck Service - 3rd round, Vojens. With three Funen drivers in the field, it seems natural for the Funen tire company.
A / S Ovethi - Dansk Dæk Service - was founded in 1954 and today employs approx. 70 employees. The company imports and markets all recognized quality brands of tires, rims and wheels for all purposes. For passenger cars and vans, 4 × 4, trucks, agricultural machinery and industry - a large as well as retail.
The Danes in the 2019 SEC
30 years, born in Vejle. European Champion 2019. Winner of the Warsaw World Cup Grand Prix 2019.
42 years, born in Odense. World Champion 2003, 2007, 2008. Four times Team World Champion. European Champion 2016
24 years, born in Nykøbing Falster. No. 4 European Championships 2018. U21 Team World Champion 2013
Michael Jepsen Jensen
27 years, born in Grindsted. Winner of the Nordic World Cup Grand Prix in Vojens 2012. Team World Champion 2012 and U21 World Champion 2012.
25 years, born in Odense. Silver winner European Championships pair 2018. Silver winner U21 World Cup 2015.
Peter Kildemand - wildcard.
29 years, born in Odense. 33 World Cup grand prix and two wins. Team World Champion 2014
The EM position before Vojens:
1. Grigory Laguta, RUS, 27
2. Leon Madsen, DAN, 26
3. Nicki Pedersen, DAN, 19
4. Bartosz Smektala, POL, 19
5. Kacpar Woryna, POL, 18
6. Michael Jepsen Jensen, DAN, 16
7. Jaroslaw Hampel, POL, 15
8. Mikkel Michelsen, DAN, 15
9. Kai Huckenbeck, TYS, 14
10. Antonio Lindbäck, SVE, 13
11. Vaclav Milik, TJK, 12
12. David Bellego, FRA, 12
13. Robert Lambert, ENG, 12
14. Pawel Przedpelski, POL, 11
15. Adrian Miedzinski, POL, 9
16. Anders Thomsen, DAN, 6
The last section is run on September 28 in Chorzow near Katowice.