Beacause of upcoming final round of Speedway Euro Championship 2017, which comes on September 16, we should mention one figure, to whom Lublin owes their best years of speedway in this city. Here's the 22-times speedway world champion - "The Professor".
Hans Nielsen was born on 26th of December 1959 in northern Denmark, in the city of Brovst. Started his adventure with speedway from racing on 50cc bikes.
- I started as 13 year old from 50cc. Back then, there were not many countries hosting such events. Denmark, where it all started had this advantage. So there were few of us, good riders and between us - me and Erik Gundersen, there was some kind of a rivalry. One wanted to beat another and this put us on a higher level. I took it very seriously and wanted to be the best in the world. Hard work, lots of trainings, proper organization and work with bikes. It all took a while - Nielsen said.
First steps towards the world champion's title, Nielsen made in England. As a 17 year old, started in - back then - top league of the world, representing Wolverhampton Wolves. When being 26, Dane got his first world championship in Chorzów (Poland). Considering individual, pair and team meetings, Hans Nielsen is a true record breaker. "The Professor" gathered 22 gold medals.
- I came to England being 17 and got my first title in the age of 26. Who knows what would've happened, If I had been racing as long as f.e. Greg Hancock. I'm really glad with what I achieved. Got the best memories from reaching my first title. I was second, behind Erik Gundersen in 1984 and 1985. It was tough, so this win in 1986 was a huge relief and joy. Looking back, it's this title, which I remember most - first world champion title. It was important to win it once and prove that you're able to repeat it, so I'm really glad I could do it. I was a part of the team, which gathered 11 gold medals of the Team World Championship plus got 7 pair titles. It's thanks to other riders' help, I have so many titles. I hope that this record of 22 titles will not be beaten - Danish world champ added.
Nielsen started his adventure with Lublin back in 1990, when Motor was in the highest league. Nielsen's arrival was treated as a real celebration. Thousands of people came to welcome Dane and it all looked like the most important person in the world is coming to town - that's who Hans Nielsen was for Lublin fans.
- My good friend from Poznań called me and asked whether I would like to race in Lublin in the Polish league. Back then, I was racing long track in Germany and I actually thought it was my sport - more than speedway racing, but on the other hand, I thought that If I switch it to start in the Polish league, that would be something new, so I agreed. First meeting was amazing. As a speedway rider, you need this attention and it's great to get such a respect. I gained fans' attention, tried to help other riders, but they were quite suspicious actually. They were not sure if I really wanted to help them. I think that this was the biggest difference, comparing to England, where everyone's trying to help each other in the pits. It was tough, through my first years in Poland. For some reason whatsoever, there was this suspiciousness whether I'm really trying to help them. Nevertheless, it was a huge pleasure to race in Lublin. There were also many great Polish riders, who maybe didn't have as good equipment as foreigners, but they got it quickly - Hans Nielsen ended.
To present how huge rider Hans Nielsen was, it's good to remind some statistics from his starts on Polish track. Between 1990 and 1999, Dane started in Motor Lublin (1990-1993) and Polonia Piła (1994-1999). In the Polish league, Nielsen got one gold medal (1999), two silver (1991, 1998) and two bronze (1996,1997). In 10 seasons, Nielsen appeared in 107 matches, starting in 556 heats, where he achieved a phenomenal average of 2,664 points per heat. Plus, between 1990 and 1997 Nielsen wasn't fourth in any heat, not even once, not including five exclusions, four engine's failures and one fall. His biggest heat average in the Polish league was in 1991, when he had 2,917 points per heat. 48 heats ended with his 43 first positions.
Tickets for SEC grand final, which will take place on September 16th in Lublin are on sale now. You can buy it on bit.ly/SEC_final_Lublin_tickets and in Empik, Media Markt and STS.
Normal: 55 zł
Recuced: 40 zł
Normal with a discount: 40 zł
There is a code on every Motor Lublin passcard - it allows you to buy normal ticket in reduced price.
IV Speedway Euro Championship round start list:
1. Krzysztof Kasprzak #507 (Poland)
2. Mateusz Szczepaniak #58 (Poland)
3. Martin Smolinski #84 (Germany)
4. Kenneth Bjerre #91 (Denmark)
5. Andzejs Lebedevs #129 (Latvia)
6. Andrey Kudryashov #9 (Russia)
7. Vaclav Milik #13 (Czechia)
8. Artem Laguta #2 (Russia)
9. Przemysław Pawlicki #59 (Poland)
10. Adrian Miedziński #20 (Poland)
11. Daniel Jeleniewski #16 (Poland)
12. Michael Jepsen Jensen #52 (Denmark)
13. Leon Madsen #66 (Denmark)
14. Andreas Jonsson #100 (Sweden)
15. Mikkel Bech #177 (Denmark)
16. Kacper Gomólski #44 (Poland)
17. Oskar Bober (Poland)
18. Wiktor Lampart (Poland)