Great Britain’s Robert Lambert warmed up for the FIM Speedway of Nations by helping Torun to their best result of the season last weekend.

Image courtesy of Steve Hone Photography

The hosts finally ended Lublin’s unbeaten record in 2024 with a 48-42 home victory, with the league leaders suffering their first loss in ten matches this year.

Lambert scored 10+3 from five rides and was one of three double figure scorers for Torun as Emil Sayfutdinov collected 13 and Patryk Dudek picked up 11+1.

Lublin had to be content with just the bonus point, and even World Champion Bartosz Zmarzlik ran two rare last places in the closing stages of the meeting.

The result was a big boost to Torun’s chances of avoiding relegation, and they now have a four-point advantage over bottom club Leszno, who were beaten 53-37 at Zielona Gora who collected all three points from the meeting.

Recently the dominant force in the PGE Ekstraliga, Leszno are now in major danger of the drop, and were unable to improve their position despite an impressive 13 points from mid-season signing Ben Cook and 11+1 from Janusz Kolodziej who is back from injury.

Zielona Gora, with Rasmus Jensen scoring 12+1 and Piotr Pawlicki going well against his old club with 12, are now up to fourth place and look set to survive in their first season back in the top flight.

Friday’s meetings produced a change for second position in the table, as Gorzow raced to an impressive 48-41 away win at Czestochowa.

The home side had the outstanding rider in the meeting as Leon Madsen racked up 15+1, but the visitors were more solid and were well led by Martin Vaculik on 12 points and Szymon Wozniak with 10.

Having taken all three points from the meeting, Gorzow moved ahead of Wroclaw who were beaten 51-39 at Grudziadz and were forced into a rearguard action to even salvage the bonus point.

They did so thanks for a 5-1 from Artem Laguta and Bartlomiej Kowalski in Heat 14, backed up by Maciej Janowski’s win in Heat 15, but it was a convincing win for GKM with Max Fricke scoring 13, whilst Dan Bewley had a mixed day for Wroclaw and finished with 6+1, including a race win and a paid win.

It was also a key result in the relegation battle with Grudziadz now three points ahead of Leszno, and the teams meet in Round 11 on July 21.

The close battle at the top of Metalkas 2. Ekstraliga continues with the top three all winning, meaning Ostrow lead the way with three matches of the regular season remaining.

They were successful 52-38 at Rzeszow with Chris Holder scoring 13+1 and Frederik Jakobsen and Gleb Chugunov both on paid-13, as they got the better of Nicki Pedersen who scored 12.

Bydgoszcz remain in second place, just a point behind, after a 60-30 thumping of Gdansk with Kai Huckenbeck and Andreas Lyager both scoring paid maximums.

Tom Brennan scored seven points from six rides for the bottom club, who remain seven points adrift of safety.

Rybnik are third, just two points off the top, after a 54-36 win over Lodz which saw Brady Kurtz score a 15-point maximum.

Meanwhile Krosno moved into fourth place ahead of Poznan after winning their clash 46-44 away from home with Kenneth Bjerre leading the way on 13 points.

In the National Speedway League, Adam Ellis put in a strong performance for Pila with 9+1 from five rides, but they were beaten 49-41 at leaders Gniezno.

Elsewhere Daugavpils defeated Opole 54-36 although Steve Worrall was not involved due to illness, whilst Tarnow beat Landshut 40-20 in a meeting abandoned after ten races due to rain.

Attention now switches to Manchester for the FIM Speedway of Nations, with Great Britain set to discover their Final opponents on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Semi-Final 1 features Poland, who track Zmarzlik, Dominik Kubera and Janowski, as they look to win the tournament for the first time under this format.

They won the Speedway World Cup last year, but in SoN competition they have had to settle for runners-up position on three occasions.

Poland take on France, Italy, Ukraine, Germany, Sweden and Finland on Tuesday, with the top two teams after the qualifiers progressing automatically to the Final, whilst the third place is determined in a race-off between the teams in third and fourth.

Semi-Final 2 on Wednesday features holders Denmark along with Australia, with the Czech Republic, Norway, Slovenia, USA and Latvia completing the line-up.

SoN has been staged on five occasions, with the first three tournaments being won by Russia who have not been part of the event since 2022, when Denmark took the title.

But arguably the most memorable moment in the history of the event came in 2021, the last time it was staged at Belle Vue, when GB took a dramatic home victory as Lambert and Bewley followed Zmarzlik home in the Final after Janowski came to grief at the end of the first lap.