Speedway

Holder narrowly misses out on World Under 21 Speedway Bike Championship Crown

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A single point that is what separated current Australian Under 21 Speedway Bike Champion Chris Holder and the 2007 World Under 21 Speedway Bike Championship during the recent running of the final Ostrow Poland. Despite winning four out of his five heat races, Holder finished in second place on a total of 14 points to eventual winner Emil Saifutdinov from Russia (15 points). In an ironic twist it was at the hands of Saifutdinov that Holder suffered his only defeat of the meeting, when he placed a narrow second behind the Russian rider. "To fall only one point shy of claiming the World Under 21 Championship is both pleasing and disappointing at the same time, but at the end it was Emil [Saifutdinov] that got the better of me in our opening ride," remarked the 19-year-old. "Although I managed to go through my remaining four rides undefeated, so did Emil, and in the end he won and I finished in second place with only one point between us. "So far this year I have beaten Emil on a regular basis, but this time, he got the better of, just went it mattered most." Holder can take some solace away from his World Under 21 Championship defeat due to the fact that he will return for next year's event. "Finishing second is a great achievement and a huge improvement considering that last year I finished 11th, and now I'm even more determined to come back and go one better next year," added Holder. In Holder's corner for this year's World Under 21 Championship final was fellow Australian and World Speedway Grand Prix rider Leigh Adams, who Holder commended him for his great support. "Having the support of Leigh [Adams] made a huge difference as he was there to offer me advice and give me riding tips," commended Holder. "Leigh won the World Under 21 Championship back in the early 1990s, so it was very helpful to have him around as he has been here and done it before, and it certainly made a big difference and a big thanks goes out to him for taking the time out from his busy schedule to offer his support." The next major event for Holder will be the Premier League Riders Championship final on Sunday, September 30 at Swindon in the UK.

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