Statistics are not telling all the truth, but in Speedway European Championship we've got a little routine. The man, who won first round, can't stay on the first place in GC until the end. This year, situation is the same.
When Jarosław Hampel won first round in Toruń, it seemed like the gold will be given for the rider who wasn't the best in inauguration. It's all because of the fact that Polonia Piła’s pupil started on Motoarena as a wild card, so he proved the theory right.
In 2013, at the begining of SEC cycle, Emil Sayfutdinov won in Gdańsk. Furthermore, he was the best in Togliatti too, where second round took place. It had to be his year, but unfortunately injury had broken his dreams. He finished the season early and gold had been given to Martin Vaculik.
What destiny stole from him in 2013, gave him back in 2014. This time the curse hit Nicki Pedersen. As in the case of Sayfutdinov, Dane won both first and second round in Gustrow and Togliatti. Unfortunately he had a crisis in Holsted, where he finished 10th with just 6 points. This tournament stole his chance to win the title. This time, Sayfutdinov, who won in Holsted, took everything.
Interestingly, Rocket from Bashkir didn’t want to gave up in 2015. We think you know what the scenario was. First round was won by… Nicki Pedersen. On Motoarena, he beat Paweł Przedpełski and Sayfutdinov. For sure, next 2 rounds in Landshut and Kumla were won by Russian, whose advantage was that big that he could celebrate next title after 14 heats in Ostrów Wielkopolski. Interestingly, he got injured celebrating the victory.
2016 cycle started from Martin Vaculik’s wictory. You know what happened later – he didn’t reach for gold. Furthermore, he finished without any medal! At the same time Pedersen was doing everything as he pleased in 2013 – he won the title. Fight for that lasted until the last race in Rybnik, when he beat Vaclav Milik, Krzysztof Kasprzak and… Sayfutdinov. Interestingly, Czech and Pole fought in extra race for silver. Finally Milik turned out to be better.
In 2017 the curse attacked again. After 2 rounds, Andrei Lebedev is on the top of the GC, but Artiom Laguta, Vaclav Milik and Krzysztof Kasprzak are very close to him.