After four days and 90 heats of racing, the Aussies topped the podium ahead of runners-up Great Britain and third-placed Sweden in Vojens, Denmark.
Jack Holder and Max Fricke saw Australia take third place in the score chart after 21 heats, booking their spot in the grand final qualifier along with Sweden, who also scored 30. Holder led Fricke to a 6-3 victory over Fredrik Lindgren and Oliver Berntzon to set up a showdown with 2021 champions Great Britain, who topped the scoring on 32.A fine start from Holder and Fricke left the Lions pair trailing, delivering Australia’s first team triumph since they won the 2002 FIM Speedway World Cup Final.
Great Britain skipper and three-time World Champion Tai Woffinden unfortunately had to miss the final due to injury, leaving the team to be represented by Robert Lambert and Dan Bewley, supported by Tom Brennan – all of whom are individually sponsored by NGK.
Lambert was pleased with a second straight top-two finish for the Lions – just hours after skipper Woffinden was forced out due to a back injury sustained in a training accident.He starred on 18 points, with GB No.3 Bewley taking all of Woffinden’s rides and racking up 14 points. While losing Woffinden was a blow to the side, Lambert admits knowing he and Bewley would be partners for every race helped them focus on the task of chasing a second straight FIM SON gold medal.
He said: “When I saw him walking around the hotel like an old man with a bad back, it wasn’t the best news. But we had to move on from that.“The way it went was that Dan and I knew we would be taking all the races. When you don’t know who is going to be racing where, it does put some pressure on the riders.“We just went out to do a job and try to get straight through to the Grand Final. We managed to do that. It just didn’t happen in the Grand Final, but it’s cool what we are doing with GB. That’s two medals in two years – that’s a good return and we have to be happy with that.”The British riders featured the NGK logo on both their upper arms and it was also be displayed on the right side of the Team GB bikes, all of which were fitted with NGK’s racing spark plugs.
John Money, who handles Speedway sponsorship on behalf of NGK Spark Plugs (UK) Ltd, said: “It was a great effort by the team, especially after losing Tai for the final. I am sure they will be fighting hard to win back the title next year.”