NEWS Saturday 28th October 2017, 5:23pm
Jason Doyle made up for the bad luck he has suffered in recent times by clinching his first World Championship title in Melbourne. He performed brilliantly to win the last Grand Prix of the season, dropping just a single point during the meeting.
He was understandably a happy man as he changed into a special gold-and-white race suit for the presentation. He becomes the 35th rider to hold the title after 72 championships dating back to 1936.
The whole of the Speedway world will applaud the man who crashed out of the championship chase last year after seemingly having the title in his grasp. Today he needed 8 points to be sure of staying ahead of his nearest challenger Patryk Dudek, but if he ever thought about avoiding risks and steadily accumulating these points, that certainly was not how he performed. He won his first three races to clinch overall victory, and rather than ease off he continued to ride irresistibly, finishing up taking the final from the back. It was one of the great World Championship performances of all time.
Dudek also deserves high praise for a great show to take second place overall in his first year as a GP rider, even though he dropped to the back in the final after leading. Third was Tai Woffinden who maintains his standing as one of the great riders in modern speedway – he now has two wins, one second and one third on his record.
It was a very entertaining event in Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium though there did not seem to be a huge crowd to witness the event. Edinburgh’s Sam Masters had a disappointing meeting in his third successive Aussie GP, touching the tapes in his first ride. He never seemed to recover from this and didn’t pick up points until a second place in his final ride. He seemed to lack speed but no doubt we will hear from captain Sam in due course.
In contrast the other Aussie Wild Cards did well – reserves Rohan Tungate (two) and Brady Kurtz (one) were amongst the race winners, while Justin Sedgmen was competitive and finished on 4 points.