Mar 23 2017
2017 Season Starts Now!Posted on March 23 2017 by MaxFricke
With the signing of a 2017 contract with the Belle Vue Aces, Max has locked in a return to three of his 2016 teams, the Aces in the Premiership League in the UK, Rospiggarna in Sweden and ROW Rybnik in Poland.
Although Max is disappointed that new restrictions placed on riders competing in the Polish Ekstraliga limiting them to three leagues prevents a return to Region Varde in Denmark, he agrees that racing in the four leagues did present challenges last year due to fixture clashes when meetings had to be rearranged.
“The Lund family in Denmark are almost like a second family to me since I went to stay with them as a junior for an extended period in 2012 and I will miss seeing them on a regular basis” said Max. “I’m also very grateful to Region Varde who have been really supportive of me since I started with them in 2014. I hope to visit when I get a bit of a break in the season to catch up with them all and maybe see a match or two”.
Max will still be busy though as he has World U21 individual and team commitments and this year, through a sponsorship deal with Boll, will be participating in the Speedway Best Pairs Cup which is contested over three rounds.
The first of these meetings is scheduled for 25 March in Torun. The teams are made up of squads representing their team sponsors with the Boll team comprising of fellow Australian and team mate from Rospiggarna, Jason Doyle and Rybnik team mate Grigorij Laguta.
“I’m really excited to be a part of the Boll team this year”, said Max. “The Best Pairs Cup is a prestigious event and one I really wanted to be a part of. To have been approached by Boll was a surprise and I’m very grateful they considered me for their team. I hope that I can be a good back up for Jason and Grigorij and make a valuable contribution to ensure we get some good results for Boll. Jason and Grigorij are great riders who are at the top of their game so I think we should be a strong team”.
Next on Max’s team calendar following this event will be the SGP Premiership Best Pairs where Max will be representing the Belle Vue Aces with team mate Craig Cook. This is the first UK team meeting scheduled for 31 March at Somerset and the field comprises two riders from each of the Premiership teams and looks really strong.
“The last time I contested a pairs meeting was in 2014 with the Edinburgh Monarchs in the lower league and this was also held at Somerset. That time things went really well for Sam Masters and I and we won it. To get a good result in an event like this both riders need to have everything going right and I just hope that Cookie and I can have a good day out and do well.
“I’ve enjoyed racing in the same team as Cookie since 2013, firstly at Edinburgh and then Belle Vue and we know each other really well. Although we haven’t raced together that much lately due to our positions in the team, I know from our shared history that we do work well together so I think we can be competitive”.
Following this I have an individual event scheduled for 1 April at the National Speedway Stadium in Manchester, the Peter Craven Memorial. I can’t wait to get back to doing some laps around this awesome stadium which is the home of the Belle Vue Aces and it will be good to get some time there testing my new bikes prior to UK League racing which commences soon. There will be some challenge matches in Poland before their league meetings commence in April which is when the Swedish League racing also begins.
Jan 29 2017
Fricke wins Fourth U21 Australian National TitlePosted on January 29 2017 by MaxFricke
Max sent a strong message about his intention to defend his World U21 Title by winning his fourth Under 21 Australian Championship in 5 years at Kurri Kurri on 28 January with a maximum score of 18 points. This win secures him one of only two spots allocated to Australians to contest the World U21 Championship and his title defence will become one of his main focusses in 2017.
Max stamped his authority on the event after blazing through his heats unbeaten before seeing off last year’s winner, Jack Holder, Jaimon Lidsey and local Josh Pickering in the final.
“This was a perfect end to my Australian racing season” said Max. ”I was a bit disappointed in 5th place in the Senior Australian Title with mechanical problems in the last round compromising my overall standing but this makes up for that a bit. Because it’s my last year in the U21 category I really wanted to win it to match the record of only two other riders to have ever won four U21 Australian Titles” he explained. ”It’s really cool to be named alongside the likes of Leigh Adams and Chris Holder who are huge names in this sport and I feel honoured to join them.
“Although I’ve been racing as a senior since turning 16 there is still an Under 21 category which I am eligible to ride in until the end of this year. I’ve had a lot of success at this level and it’s good to finish my Australian Under 21 career on such a high” he concluded.
Max will again be very busy in 2017 after renewing his contracts with his ROW Rybnik team in the Polish PGE Ekstraliga and his Rospiggarna Elite League team in Sweden. There is still some uncertainty surrounding the future of his UK based Premiership League team Belle Vue but Max is hoping this will be sorted shortly to enable a return to the Manchester based side in 2017.
Being the U21 World Champion and also being named the “2016 Discovery of the Season” in the Polish PGE Ekstraliga after some very strong performances means there will be a lot of pressure on Max to maintain the form he displayed last season however, he’s not too worried about this. “Each year I have been steadily improving and I’ve made some pretty good progress in my career. Having stepped up to the top level of racing with my UK, Polish and Swedish clubs means that I get to race against the best riders in the world on a weekly basis. I’ve beaten all of them at one time or another and this gives me the confidence to continually push myself.
“Racing against these guys is the best way to improve my racing and I’m looking forward to getting started again in March” said Max.
Max will be participating in the Darcy Ward benefit meeting in Queensland on 11 February prior to having a short break before heading back to Europe at the end of February to commence his preparation for the upcoming European season.
Oct 27 2016
Fricke Named as 3rd Reserve for 2017 Speedway GP SeriesPosted on October 27 2016 by MaxFricke
Exciting news today has confirmed the fantastic year that Max has had when he was named as the third reserve rider in next year’s FIM Speedway Grand Prix World Championships.
Max’s consistent results from his debut season in the Polish PGE Ekstraliga and Swedish Elite Leagues together with a good second season in the UK Elite League, successful appearances in the Australian World Cup Teams event and winning the U21 World Championship were all taken into consideration when determining the reserve positions.
“I’ve had a particularly busy season this year and I’m really happy with how things went, said Max. ”Apart from a bit of a low point after suffering an injury in the World Cup Event I’ve been happy with what I’ve achieved. You never know what will happen next year and if I get the opportunity to race in the GP series I’ll be ready to give it everything” he concluded.
Link here for the full FIM Speedway GP article on 2017 line up, wildcards and reserve riders.