Assen, in the north-east of the Netherlands, is the prime venue to watch motorcycles in this country with the TT Circuit and also De Bonte Wever stadium. It's here that the third and penultimate round of the FIM Ice Speedway Gladiators Championship took place on 17 and 18 March. Moreover, Assen Motorclub celebrated its 40th ice racing anniversary on this occasion. For the first time of the season, artificial ice replaced the natural ice of Russian tracks.
During the two days of races, the three Russian leaders of the Championship engaged in spectacular overtaking manoeuvres on the 370 metre circuit. At the end of the first day, Khomitsevich clinched first place, followed by Nikolay Krasnikov, who fell during the last lap of the final, and by Daniil Ivanov disqualified in the 19th series for having come into contact with Krasnikov.
On the following day, Ivanov caught up by winning the final, and a fourth lad, Eduard Krysov, got into the lead pack by bagging third place, behind Krasnikov. In the points standings, the latter keeps his first place in the World Championship, but his slender lead augurs a splendid final at Uppsala, Sweden, in the last weekend of March. An amusing detail is that Russian riders are monopolising the first six places of the Championship.
01// Nikolay Krasnikov - 111 points - Motul
02// Daniil Ivanov - 107 points
03// Dmitry Khomitsevich - 98 points
Images : © David Reygondeau