Nice guys finish last.
It’s another one of those sayings that has become commonplace in life. An overused cliché that has lost meaning and truth in many circumstances.
Because you don’t have to be nasty to achieve. Just take a look at King’s Lynn Stars’ Niels-Kristian Iversen. ‘Mr Nice Guy’ himself is one of the most-liked, respectful and inoffensive riders in speedway circles. Yet he rarely finishes last – especially in his home country’s championships.
On Saturday, Iversen, known as Puk, now 36, won his seventh, yes SEVENTH, Danish title in a row. He’s been the best rider in his country in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018. And this isn’t any old country either. It’s Denmark, one of the strongest nations in world speedway.
Puk’s latest achievement moved him up to joint second in the all-time list of Danish champions. But more importantly, it saw him equal one of the proudest records in the sport’s history.
Twelve-time winner Ole Olsen won seven in a row in the late 1960s and early 70s and now Lynn’s biggest hitter has matched him.
Humble Stars hero Iversen said: “We managed to equal the great Ole Olsen’s record with seven Danish titles on the spin.
“Can’t even express how proud I am of this achievement. And to do it in my hometown of Esbjerg makes it even more special. Thanks to my team, family, sponsors and everyone who supports me through thick and thin.”
This stunning streak of success comes during a time when the Scandinavian powerhouse has collected two golds and two silvers at the annually staged World Cup events.
It’s also arrived when Iversen’s been taking to the tapes with such illustrious names as three-time world champion Nicki Pedersen and other riders who have graced the Grand Prix scene such as Peter Kildemand and Kenneth Bjerre.
Puk’s Danish dominance has continued throughout some up and down periods in league racing and with injuries. Yet every time he’s been written off or suffers a setback he comes bouncing back with a smile on his face and fire in his heart.
After being, in many eyes, unfairly denied a GP wildcard for the 2018 series, Iversen didn’t whine and moan. He got his head down and earned his slot for next year by booking his place through the hard-fought qualification process.
Lynn’s flying Dane has become a legend at the Adrian Flux Arena. Yet he’s now cemented his status in his own country’s sporting record books.
He will go down as one of the finest Danish riders of all time and it really couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.
12: Ole Olsen
7: Nicki Pedersen,
6: Hans Nielsen
5: Erik Gundersen
4: Kurt Walter Pedersen
3: Brian Karger,
2: Erik Kastebo, Arne Pander, Brian Andersen, Leif Bech, Jan O Pedersen
1: Hans N Andersen, Bent Norregard Jensen, Bjarne Pedersen, Kenneth Bjerre, Bo Petersen, Tommy Knudsen, Bent Jensen, Gert Handberg, Svend Nissen, HP Boisen, Godtfred Andreasen, Hans Clausen, Erik Engsrom
Arena fun for Plato and Sutton
It was great to catch up with British Tour Car Championship legend Jason Plato and 2017 champion Ash Sutton again last week.
The Adrian Flux Subaru Racing Team BMR pair were in King’s Lynn to have some fun down at Saddlebow Road for a short video.
The duo were great value as they took on three driving challenges; reversing around a track, using the handbrake to parallel park between two cars and drifting around a course.
There were plenty of laughs but of course it got competitive fairly swiftly.
It was another great opportunity for me, thanks to the relationship with Flux my company (Maze Media) has. And with my Studio20a hat on (under the Maze umbrella) it’s going to be great to see how the film turns out. I’ll let you know when it all goes live.