Dan Bewley is set to cap off a remarkable breakthrough season at the 2022 FIM Speedway Grand Prix final round in Torun but remains level-headed over his successes.
The 23-year-old hotshot wasn’t originally scheduled to be among the permanent riders this season and only got the call-up off the back of suspensions to Russian pair Artem Laguta and Emil Sayfutdinov over the war in Ukraine.
Grasping his chance with both hands, Bewley has literally raced up the standings and sits in fifth place, seven points behind Patryk Dudek in a bronze medal position.
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Speaking to Eurosport ahead of the meeting, Bewley was calm about his prospects of a historic podium finish this season.
“It would be cool,” he casually remarked. “If we were in third place, it will be cool. If we don't, it doesn't really change anything. It's been a really good year. And whatever happens, it won't affect that it's been a good year.
“But for sure, if we're going to go, we might as well go and try and put a good result in and give us the best chance possible for a medal also.
“I think the position I'm in now, I'd have to have a pretty good night to finish third overall. So for me, it's kind of just go and have some fun and try and mix it up on the track to just try to have the best result we can. That's about as much as I can do, just try and focus on ourselves. And, yeah, have some fun and try and get a good result.”
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Bewley’s ‘good year’ has seen him make history after winning his first Grand Prix in round six in Cardiff, ending Britain's 15-year wait for an FIM British Speedway GP winner.
He then followed this up with victory in Wroclaw to make it back-to-back victories, momentarily propelling him into that coveted third spot and sparking whispers of a possible title challenge.
Although unable to keep pace with eventual champions Bartosz Zmarzlik, Bewley finished second in the GP Challenge event, granting him automatic qualification to the 2023 Speedway Grand Prix series.
With his place for next season in the bag, the pressure is perhaps eased in Torun as he doesn’t need to secure a top six finish.
“The actual goals before the season for this year were just to try and qualify for the SGP for next year,” he admitted as he assessed his campaign so far. “So we are kind of already on house money, and we just go now and have some fun.
“For sure, the most memorable thing is for me is obviously Cardiff and special to have my first GP win in my home country, home crowd, that was pretty special. And to back it up in Wroclaw two weeks later that was pretty special, too.
“But, really some of the most memorable things for me was the GP in Prague, and then the GP, in Gorzow after that”.
Great Britain's Bewley wins Speedway GP final in Cardiff
Bewley reached his first semi-final in the Czech Republic, starting a run of five consecutive meetings in which he did so.
“They were the GPs when I really felt like I was capable to win and I actually deserved to be there, and I felt part of it. So, yeah, that's something that I'll remember but obviously, the first GP win is pretty special.”
Although his form has dipped slightly with poor scores from the two most recent rounds in Vojens and Malilla respectively, Bewley is taking it in his stride and is determined to identify and rectify any issues on the track going forwards.
“It's been tough," he confessed. "I think, in Malilla, the last GP, that was maybe a little bit of inexperience. We made some errors with equipment, and also with me as a rider in the practice, I messed some things up.
He added: “And then in Vojens before that, I didn't have as good a result again. It was a similar thing again. It's one thing to be fast on the track, but if you don't make good starts and put yourself in good positions, and it doesn't matter. And I think it's just trying to learn from that and trying to improve it for next year.”
Speedway Grand Prix Wroclaw Final Highlights: Bewley makes it back-to-back wins
But what does ‘next year’ hold in store? With his place secured, Bewley is confident of another good season and believes with improvements from this campaign, he can aim straight for the very top and plans to enjoy every second of his continuing Speedway Grand Prix journey.
“I think every rider in GP wants to be world champion, so obviously, that's the goal,” he revealed. “But at end of the day, I think for next year it's just about trying to implement what we've learned from this year and try and learn from some mistakes and also learn from some of the things we did well also.
“If we can do that next year, I think we would be in a pretty good position to be in the top three and you know, maybe higher but yeah, just keep having fun and see what we can do.”
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Stream the 2022 Speedway Grand Prix season live and ad-free on discovery+ with live race action also on Eurosport 2.
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