The national squads for the 2021 Monster Energy FIM Speedway of Nations have been revealed.
The competition gets underway with the Semi-Finals at Latvian venue Daugavpils on September 17 and 18.
Poland faces off against Sweden, Denmark, the Czech Republic, Finland, Slovenia and the USA in Semi-Final 1 on Friday, September 17, with hosts Latvia taking on MFR, Australia, Germany, France, Italy and the Ukraine in Semi-Final 2 on Saturday, September 18.
Each country must list a squad of two or three senior riders, plus one or two under-21s, before naming their final starting line-up next week, featuring two seniors and one under-21.
World champion Bartosz Zmarzlik has been named in Poland’s squad ahead of Semi-Final 1, with Maciej Janowski returning to the group after missing the 2020 tournament.
Last year’s under-21 star Dominik Kubera is handed a dream call-up to complete the list of seniors, having reached both Orlen Lublin FIM Speedway Grand Prix of Poland finals on a sensational SGP debut weekend last month.
Lublin star Wiktor Lampart and Czestochowa racer Jakub Miskowiak are Poland’s under-21 options as team manager Rafal Dobrucki names his first SON squad since taking charge of his country.
The Danes name SGP stars Leon Madsen and Anders Thomsen in their senior spots, along with European champion Mikkel Michelsen.
FIM Speedway Under-21 World Championship leader Mads Hansen and Jonas Seifert-Salk serve as their under-21s.
World No.3 Fredrik Lindgren leads the Swedish selections and he is joined by double Swedish champion Jacob Thorssell and 2021 Swedish Championship runner-up Pontus Aspgren.
Team manager Morgan Andersson names Philip Hellstrom-Bangs and Alexander Woentin as his under-21s.
Vaclav Milik leads the Czech list and he is joined by veteran Josef Franc and Prague prospect Daniel Klima. Anlas Czech SGP wild card Jan Kvech and Petr Chlupac are their under-21 options.
American shooting star Luke Becker is in the USA squad, alongside Broc Nicol and Dillon Ruml. Blake Borello and Anthony Dion are their under-21s.
Matic Ivacic leads the Slovenian line-up alongside former World Under-21 finalist Nick Skorja. Anze Grmek is their sole under-21 rider in a three-man squad.
The Finns select Timo Lahti, Tero Aarnio and Jesse Mustonen as their senior stars, with Timi Salonen and Roni Niemela their under-21s.
Hosts Latvia take to the shale in Semi-Final 2 on Saturday, September 18, with former European champion Andzejs Lebedevs named in their squad, alongside fellow 2021 GP Challenge finalist Jevgenijs Kostigovs and last year’s World Under-21 Final bronze medallist Olegs Mihailovs.
Current World Under-21 finalists Francis Gusts and Daniils Kolodinskis are their junior stars.
MFR are without their triple world title-winning pair Emil Sayfutdinov and Artem Laguta, with Sergei Logachev and Vladimir Borodulin representing the reigning champions.
Lublin rider Mark Karion is their sole under-21 as team manager Tatiana Savina names a three-man squad.
Australian team manager Mark Lemon has selected 2017 world champion Jason Doyle, along with SGP 2022 qualifier Max Fricke and Jack Holder. Young guns Keynan Rew and World Under-21 finalist Matthew Gilmore are in line for the under-21 position.
Former SGP regular Martin Smolinski and Kai Huckenbeck team up for Germany and they are joined by under-21 Nick Blodorn in a three-man squad.
The French select Masarna colleagues David Bellego and Dimitri Berge, with World Under-21 finalist Steven Goret named as their under-21 rider on a three-man list.
SGP first reserve Aleksandr Loktaev is nominated by Ukraine alongside Vitalii Lisak and Stanislav Melnychuk. Their under-21 riders are Marko Levishyn and Andryi Rozaliuk.
The Italians complete the field for Semi-Final 2 and they name Nicolas Covatti, Paco Castagna, and Nicolas Vicentin in their squad. Michele Menani is their sole under-21 selection.
The top two teams from each Semi-Final automatically join hosts Great Britain in the Monster Energy SON Final in Manchester on October 16 and 17.
The third and fourth-placed teams in both of the Daugavpils rounds will then compete in the Final Qualifier at the end of each night for the two remaining places in the Final, where the 2021 Monster Energy SON world champion will be crowned.
MONSTER ENERGY SON SEMI-FINAL SQUADS (in draw order):
SEMI-FINAL 1 – FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 17
TEAM A – USA
U21 Blake Borello
U21 Anthony Dion
Team Manager: Steve Evans
TEAM B – POLAND
U21 Wiktor Lampart
U21 Jakub Miskowiak
Team Manager: Rafal Dobrucki
TEAM C – CZECH REPUBLIC
U21 Jan Kvech
U21 Petr Chlupac
Team Manager: Filip Sitera
TEAM D – DENMARK
U21 Mads Hansen
U21 Jonas Seifert-Salk
Team Manager: Hans Nielsen
TEAM E – SLOVENIA
U21 Anze Grmek
Team Manager: Gregor Arnsek
TEAM F – SWEDEN
U21 Philip Hellstrom-Bangs
U21 Alexander Woentin
Team Manager: Morgan Andersson
TEAM G – FINLAND
U21 Timi Salonen
U21 Roni Niemela
Team Manager: Jyri Palomaki
SEMI-FINAL 2 – SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 18
TEAM A – ITALY
U21 Michele Menani
Team Manager: Alessandro Dalla Valle
TEAM B – AUSTRALIA
U21 Keynan Rew
U21 Matthew Gilmore
Team Manager: Mark Lemon
TEAM C – UKRAINE
U21 Marko Levishyn
U21 Andryi Rozaliuk
Team Manager: Sergey Lyatosinskyy
TEAM D – MFR
U21 Mark Karion
Team Manager: Tatiana Savina
TEAM E – LATVIA
U21 Francis Gusts
U21 Daniils Kolodinskis
Team Manager: Vladimir Ribnikovs
TEAM F – GERMANY
U21 Nick Blodorn
Team Manager: Herbert Rudolph
TEAM G – FRANCE
U21 Steven Goret
Team Manager: Laurent Sambarrey