Australian speedway rider Chris Holder has claimed his maiden World Speedway Championship at the Marian Rose MotoArena in Poland. Holder entered the final round with a slim two-point lead over Nicki Pedersen and their night would be closely fought and heated.
In the second-semi final, Pedersen and Holder faced off. Holder launched from the inside gate when Pedersen leaned heavily from gate two to force Holder to back off. The Aussie held his line and the two bumped; then Holder collided with Pedersen, sending Pedersen to the ground. Some thought Holder would be excluded from the event but the referee ruled that all four riders would restart.
Pedersen, a known hothead with a short temper, was less than impressed. The two exchanged words before Holder’s younger brother stepped in and was shoved by Pedersen. This fired up Holder who saw red, shoving Pedersen and exchanging heated words while Pedersen was dragged away. Fellow Aussie and former world champion Jason Crump took Chris Holder away from the carnage to clear his head as the semi-final would be rerun.
Holder would qualify via the semi-final rerun and make it into the night’s final while Pedersen, who’d made it to the semi via a count back, could only manage a third position and was unable to continue in the night’s events.
Holder’s bike would expire in the final race of the night, while Antonio Lindback, Tomasz Gollob and Greg Hancock would round out the podium. Chris Holder’s points rewarded him with the 2012 World Speedway Championship.
2012 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP RESULTS
1 Chris Holder 160
2 Nicki Pedersen 152
3 Greg Hancock 148
4 Tomasz Gollob 142
5 Emil Sayfutdinov 133
6 Jason Crump 126
7 Antonio Lindback 122
8 Fredrik Lindgren 119
9 Andreas Jonsson 88
10 Hans Andersen 69