2013-2020 SEC Summary: Russia

28.01.21
12:35
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Russia is another country, which achieved a victory in the Speedway Euro Championship. Riders from this country in eight years of competition in the series won two gold medals, to which they added two silver and two bronze. In 2013-2020 Russian representatives have always participated in the fight for the title of European champion. Two Russians defended their country's colors in the SEC cycle for six seasons and three time it was three riders. They won each of their medals in a different year, which meant that they weren’t on the final podium in only two seasons.

When the SEC series made its debut in the calendar of international events, Russia was represented by Grigorij Laguta and Emil Sayfutdinov. The first of them achieved a better final result, winning the bronze medal with 42 points, losing two points to Nicki Pedersen and five points to Martin Vaculík, who became the champion. The elder of the Laguta brothers was on the podium twice this season and it took place in Togliatti (2nd place) and Rzeszow (3rd place). Sayfutdinov finished the cycle in 9th place with 27 points, but it was very unlucky. He won the first two final rounds in Gdansk and Togliatti and he couldn’t participate in the last two, due to an injury he suffered in Torun. A year later this rider again presented himself very well, triumphing in the Speedway Euro Championship series. He won the gold medal thanks to 54 points on his account and he raced in the final heats three times – he was second in the tournament in his country (Togliatti), third in Holsted and fourth in Czestochowa. Grigorij Laguta finished the cycle in 12th place with 17 points, but due to an injury he only raced in the final round in Czestochowa, where he won.

Sayfutdinov's good run of luck continued in 2015. This time he scored 58 points, defended the title of the Individual European Champion and is the only rider, who managed to do this in the SEC cycle so far. The victory in the series was the result of very good performances, he appeared on the podium three times, taking third place in Torun and winning the final rounds in Landshut and Kumla. In that year two fellow-countrymen of Sayfutdinov raced in the cycle – Grigorij Laguta was sixth (30 points) and his younger brother Artem was seventh (28 points). 2016 was the first season in which the Russians missed the SEC's final podium. Grigorij Laguta collected 37 points on his account and in an even season it allowed him to take fourth place, one point behind second Václav Milík and third Krzysztof Kasprzak and three to the Nicki Pedersen, who won the title. After two championship seasons Emil Sayfutdinov finished the SEC series in 7th place with 35 points to his name.

2017 was the second year when three Russians were in the list of regular participants. However, Grigorij Laguta only raced in one final round (due to a suspension) and with 9 points he finished in 19th place. On the other hand, his brother Artem did very well, winning the silver medal, collecting 45 points and losing seven to the European champion Andzejs Lebedevs. The younger Laguta raced in the final heats twice – he won the competition in Güstrow and was third in Lublin. The third Russian in the list of regular participants was Andrey Kudryashov, who took 9th place (26 points). In the 2018 none of the Russian representatives stood on the podium for the second time – Emil Sayfutdinov scored 39 points and took 6th place, while Andrey Kudryashov again collected 26 points next to his name, which allowed him to take 10th place.

In the last two years Russia was again represented in the Speedway Euro Championship by Grigorij Laguta and Kudryashov. In 2019 the first of them was very close to winning the gold medal. Finally, together with Mikkel Michelsen, he collected 45 points, but the Dane turned out to be better in the additional heat. That season Laguta made two performances in the final heats, winning the tournament in Güstrow and taking the 2nd place on the podium in Torun. Kudryashov appeared on the track as a reserve of the cycle only once – in Vojens he scored 5 points and took 23rd place in the final classification. In the pandemic 2020 season, the elder Laguta did well again in the five final tournaments in Poland, managed to collect 52 points and hang a bronze medal around his neck. Hoever, the loss to the other places on the podium was quite clear – respectively 12 points to the second Leon Madsen and 14 to the Individual European Champion, Robert Lambert. The Russian started in three final heats and it took place in Bydgoszcz (2nd place), Rybnik and Gniezno (twice 3rd place). Kudryashov raced poorly and finished in the far 16th position (21 points).

Three final rounds of the Speedway Euro Championship series have been organized in Russia so far. All of them were held in Togliatti in 2013, 2014 and 2016. Emil Sayfutdinov won in the first tournament, ahead of Nicki Pedersen and Grigorij Laguta. A year later Pedersen and Sayfutdinov swapped places and Patryk Dudek was the third. The 2016 season brought the victory of Grigorij Laguta and next to him on the podium stood the second Antonio Lindbäck and the third Leon Madsen.

SEC News
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Michelsen: Hard work pays off

Mikkel Michelsen became the Individual European Champion 2021. In Rybnik, cheered by the local audience, the Dane reached for his second career title.

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Madsen: I will win the title again

By winning the SEC 2021 silver medal, Leon Madsen equalled Nicki Pedersen's achievement and reached for his fourth consecutive SEC medal. In Rybnik the Dane stood on the highest step of the podium, but in the general classification he lost two points to Mikkel Michelsen.

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Dudek: It wasn’t easy

Patryk Dudek won the bronze medal of the 2021 European Speedway Championships. In Rybnik the Polish rider made up lost points and led to an extra heat in which he defeated Piotr Pawlicki.

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Hansen: I learned a lot

Patrick Hansen finished on 12th position in the Speedway Euro Championship 2021. The Dane insists that competing against Europe's best riders is a good lesson for him for the future.

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Bellego: I always want more

For David Bellego the competition in Rybnik was the first in this year's cycle of Speedway Euro Championship. Due to an injury, the Frenchman couldn’t take part in previous rounds, but during Saturday's competition he presented himself from a very good side.

13.07.21
Lambert: It's a pleasure to be part of the SEC

Last year's SEC winner Robert Lambert finished seventh in the general classification of this year's competition and that means did not secure his spot for the next year’s series. The Briton stresses that he has struggled since the beginning of the cycle.

Photos
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