PETER Kildemand admitted he was left feeling a little empty despite making the final in his Grand Prix debut in Copenhagen on Saturday.
The Dane was handed the wild card at PARKEN, having previously been a track reserve and, after notching 12 points in his qualifying heats and winning his semi-final, found himself in the last four.
Kildemand was the victim of a tough first corner involving eventual winner Niels-Kristian Iversen and Swindon skipper Troy Batchelor, who finished second, and was squeezed out to finish at the back behind Greg Hancock despite trying every line to pass the American.
While he had to watch on as the champagne flew during the podium celebrations, Kildemand was proud of all he achieved despite admitting to feeling slightly disappointed.
“I’m really pleased with it but it’s a little bit of an empty feeling to come away from the meeting without running a last all night until the final,” he said.
“I gambled a bit and took gate four with my second pick but it didn’t really work out for me although I did make a good jump and got away well.
“It was a tough first corner but I thought I could make it with gate four and I did what I thought I would. Niels took my line in the first corner and that was it but it was great to be in the final.
“It feels really good and I couldn’t really ask for any more to be honest. One of my goals was to get to the semis but then I got there and got to the final.
“It was so cool to ride in PARKEN and it’s a shame we won’t be riding there anymore, but it’s good for Danish speedway that Niels won it.”
Kildemand was also pleased to see Swindon teammate Batchelor perform so well in Denmark, as he picked up 20 points, and is looking forward to linking up with the Aussie in team action at Wolverhampton tonight.
“Troy was on it and it was good for Swindon,” he said.
“I’m looking forward to riding at Wolverhampton and we did okay there before, so I think we can do it.”
Kildemand’s night began in the best possible way as he jumped out the start in heat one, only to see the race pulled back as Freddie Lindgren hit the deck in turn one. It didn’t effect the Robins number one though as he repeated his gating heroics to win the re-run.
Having been drawn out number one, Kildemand was first out after every grading break and met Batchelor in the pair’s second outing. As was the case all night, Batchelor made a stunning gate and Kildemand couldn’t catch him, although he did beat Andreas Jonsson and Tai Woffinden to complete a Robins 5-1.
The Dane was out in white, the least successful gate, in heat nine and was soon eating dirt after slipping off before the pack made turn one. However, he was given a second chance and managed second behind Krzysztof Kasprzak which was almost enough to secure his semi-final spot.
A stunning cut between Michael Jepsen Jensen and Jarek Hampel was enough for Kildemand to secure his passage from heat 13, before he rounded off his qualifying rides with a second behind Hancock in heat 17.
From there, Kildemand had the first choice of gate in the second semi-final and won from the gate off red, before opting for the outside in the final. Despite making the gate, he couldn’t get around Iversen and eventually fell into a tussle with Hancock which didn’t go his way.