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ALLEN HAILS BATTLING BRITS

Joint GB boss Oliver Allen was proud of his Lions as he hailed Dan Bewley for an epic battle with double world champ Bartosz Zmarzlik.

24 / 10 / 2020, 12:53

Joint Great Britain boss Oliver Allen was proud of his Lions stars as he hailed Dan Bewley for a breathtaking battle with world champion Bartosz Zmarzlik.

The Brits finished sixth in last Saturday’s rain-curtailed Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations Final in Lublin, scoring 12 points.

While they were unable to win a medal, Allen was impressed with how a young team performed. And he particularly enjoyed Belle Vue favourite Bewley’s heroics as he roared past Polish pair Zmarzlik and Szymon Wozniak on the opening lap of heat one.

I think that was the first time I have seen Zmarzlik passed all year. It’s always the other way around. Bartosz passes people; he doesn’t get passed, so that was a fantastic ride.

Oliver Allen

While Zmarzlik recaptured the lead, the race underlines the Cumbrian’s huge promise on the world stage.

Allen said: “I think that was the first time I have seen Zmarzlik passed all year. It’s always the other way around. Bartosz passes people; he doesn’t get passed, so that was a fantastic ride.

“Dan didn’t hold on, but when he passed Bartosz, it made people stand up and look. I thought Dan rode really well.

“I thought both boys rode really well. A couple of mistakes cost us, but it is what it is.”

Allen and fellow team manager Simon Stead tracked by far the youngest team in the Final, with 22-year-old Robert Lambert skippering Bewley, 21, and Drew Kemp, 18.

It was a tough night for the young guns as Lambert rolled into the tapes twice, while Bewley also crashed in Lions’ last heat against Sweden, which saw the Brits slump to a 7-0 loss.

But Allen said: “My main message is I am proud of the boys. All weekend they handled themselves really well. I also don’t want any fingers pointed at Robert. He has had a brilliant year.

“Okay, he touched the tapes twice, but it was a nervy night and there was movement from people around him at the start when he did it. I am certainly not pointing any fingers. It sums up what was a weird year.

“Robert was a leader all weekend. I know we only rode one day, but we were there from the Thursday and his attitude and professionalism was great. I am proud of him and he can be really proud of himself. He was a great role model for Jordan (Palin), Drew and Dan. So I am really, really pleased with that.

“I thought Robert and Dan rode well. In those conditions, they rode really well. Dan had his crash and Robert touched the tapes twice, but it can happen. Robert says he doesn’t think he has touched the tapes this year.

“On reflection, I am really proud of how our boys conducted themselves. I couldn’t have asked anymore from them. Off track, they were fantastic. I wouldn’t have changed anything in that way. I wouldn’t change anything about how we prepared or the team we took.”

Photo: Taylor Lanning

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