Cleator speedway star's place at next year's Grand Prix series confirmed

Gets his reward: Comets' Craig Cook
Gets his reward: Comets' Craig Cook

Speedway star Craig Cook will take on the world’s best in next year’s Grand Prix series.

Cook’s place in the 2018 series was finally confirmed as Patryk Dudek won Saturday’s Polish GP in Torun, ensuring the Pole will finish in the top eight.

Because Dudek finished in the top three of August’s GP Challenge meeting at Togliatti, Russia, to automatically qualify, fourth-placed Cook knew a top-eight finish for the Polish rider in this year’s series would hand him a place for 2018.

Dudek’s victory on Saturday confirmed that and Cook can now set about bringing in big sponsorship and planning his gear for the campaign.

Tony Jackson, Cook’s team manager at Workington, said: “He’s done brilliantly to get there and to ride in the GPs next year will be special.

“It just sums up the highs and lows of speedway that on the night Patryk Dudek won to put him in next year, Craig got injured and pulled out of a meeting.

"He knows himself he’ll have to spend a lot of money to get up to speed but I think he’ll make sure he competes.

“It’ll be tough but he’s got the determination to succeed and it’ll be good to have two British riders in the series rather than just one.”

The Cleator racer has already experienced Grand Prix racing as a wild card at Cardiff but next year will be a different proposition as he racks up the miles in a bid for international glory.

“I think he’ll certainly make an impact,” Jackson added.

“He’s had a few appearances as a wild card but it’s different when you’re in the series full-time.”

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