While much of the Australian media has completely ignored Chris Holder’s World Championship win at the weekend, controversial Sydney-based talkback radio presenter Alan Jones rang Holder and talked to him live on air on his Radio 2GB breakfast show on Monday. Supporters who did not hear the interview can listen to it using this link: http://www.2gb.com/index2.php?option...=view&id=14593
Holder, who became just the fifth Australian to win the Championship since its inception in 1936, following Lionel Van Praag (1936), Bluey Wilkinson (1938), Jack Young (1951, 52) and Jason Crump (2004, 06, 09), will make his first on-track appearance since lifting the title in Poland, tonight riding for his British League team Poole Pirates, and Poole promoter Matt Ford is looking to stage a spectacular homecoming for new World Champio.
Ford said: “As a club we are doing everything to make it one of the most special evenings ever witnessed at Poole. We have some to top but we are so hugely proud of what Chris has achieved that we really must push the boat out on this occasion.”
Ford is hoping that the town, the very town in which Chris resides in the UK, will turn out in their volumes to honour Holder's maiden world title in only his third season of Grand Prix competition.
He added: "We have bolstered our stocks of air horns and it would be great to generate a cacophony of noise when we present Chris to the public. There will also be plenty of giveaways and of course the chance to see the NEW World champion ride for the first time. I will be keeping everything crossed that it doesn't rain on Chris' parade.”
Australian fans will hopefully get their chance to acknowledge Holder’s Championship win later in the summer when he returns to Australia.
The final World Championship standings were: 1 Chris Holder (Australia) 160 points; 2 Nicki Pedersen 152; 3 Greg Hancock 148; 4 Tomasz Gollob 142; 5 Emil Sayfutdinov 133; 6 Jason Crump (Australia) 126; 7 Antonio Lindback 122; 8 Fredrik Lindgren 119; 9 Andreas Jonsson 88; 10 Hans Andersen 69; 11 Martin Vaculik 67; 12 Chris Harris 65; 13 Bjarne Pedersen 59; 14 Jaroslaw Hampel 58; 15 Peter Ljung 57; 16 Kenneth Bjerre 41; 17 Michael Jepsen Jensen 22; 18 Krzysztof Kasprzak 17; 19 Tomas H. Jonasson 16; 20 Bartosz Zmarzlik 13; 21 Jurica Pavlic 12; 22 Josef Franc 9; 23 Maciej Janowski 8; 24 Przemyslaw Pawlicki 7; 25 Scott Nicholls 7; 26 Mikkel B. Jensen 4; 27 Nicolas Covatti 3; 28 Peter Kildemand 2; 29 Jason Bunyan 1.
Full details of Holder’s dramatic victory can be found, along with video clips, on the BSI Speedway Limited official website [www.speedwaygp.com].
The weekend’s Grand Prix also marked the retirement from World Individual Championship competition of three-times winner Jason Crump. Crump is one of the SGP series’ all-time greats, and finished in the top three for ten successive seasons from 2001 to 2010. He will continue to ride in the Polish and Swedish Leagues in 2013.
Another Australian, Mildura's Cameron Woodward, has also figured prominently in World Championship competition this year. Woodward finished sixth in the World Longtrack Championship in his first year in the event and has qualified for the 2013 series.
Chris Holder and Cameron Woodward are pictured below in action at Gillman Speedway last season; while Holder is also pictured in front of the Gillman "Speedway Safety System Airfence". Both photos courtesy of Judy Mackay.