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Noel Baldacchino represents Malta in European Championship

Noel Baldacchino

Noel Baldacchino

Next Sunday champion driver Noel Baldacchino will be heading to Sweden in order to represent our country in the European Championship for Professional Drivers which is going to be hosted by the racetracks of Solanget and Umea on Monday and Tuesday 18th and 19th August. The best drivers in Europe participate in this championship and this year apart from Baldacchino the participants are Hubert Brandstatter Jr (Austria), Knud Monster (Denmark), Mika Forss (Finland), Tony Le Beller (France), Michael Nimczyk (Germany), Hugo Langeweg Jr (The Netherlands), Vidar Hop (Norway), Branislav Mukic (Serbia), Guillermo Andreau Adover (Spain) and Bjorn Goop (Sweden). The driver that won the most races last year is Bjorn Goop who registered 367 victories from 2084 starts and he is hoping to win this championship as it is being held in his home country. These past years this championship is being held every other year as it is alternating with the World Championship.

The drivers that make it in the top five places in this championship gain the right to participate in the World Championship scheduled to be held in Australia next February. Last year the world championship was won by France and Pierre Vercruysse whilst the European Championship in 2012 was won by Italian Enrico Bellei. Drivers are awarded points according to the placing they finish in with the winner getting 18 points, second placed 13, third placed 10 points and in fourth place 8 points with the other placings getting one point less each time. A disqualification is awarded one point whilst if a horse is declared a non runner the driver gets 6 points.

The championship opens up at the racetrack of Solanget next Monday with the drivers taking part in four races. This racetrack is 1004m long. The first race is at 19:08 over a distance of 1646m autostart for horses having up to 850,000 Swedish Kroner in earnings. Noel Baldacchino will be driving number 10 Pine Rolls a 6-year old Norwegian which does not seem to be amongst the favourites to win the race. The second race starts at 19:52 over a 2650m distance for horses with a maximum earnings of Sek 175,000. Baldacchino has drawn number 4 Razza Yamoz and once again does not seem to be amongst the favourites.

In the following race the drivers will be competing on Kallblads over the 1646 system and for Noel Baldacchino this will be his first experience driving such horses. He will be starting with number 6 on Norwegian Hogda Kvikk that does not seem to be one of the best horses in the field.The last race at Solanget starts at 20:36 over a distance of 2148m and with horses that have a maximum of 300,000 Swedish Kroner in earnings. This time Baldacchino seems to have been lucky in the draws as with number 3 and the Robert Bergh trained Elegance Brodde he will be starting amongst the most favourite to win the race.

The following day drivers move to the racetrack of Umaker with another four races. The first race is the third one of the programme for horses with a maximum of Sek 525,000 in earnings and Noel Baldacchino does not seem to have drawn a good horse as he is being considered as the least one with any chance of victory. Here he has number 3 and the horse Rally Swing. In the second race the drivers will once again be driving kallblads over the 2140m distance. Noel will be starting with number 7 Angskalla and it seems he stands a good chance of acquiring a good placing. The 7th race is over the 1640m distance and is open to all horses. Baldacchino will be driving number 9 Bart Sjohammar and it seems that here one horse will be starting as the clear favourite with all the other horses having an equal chance of acquiring a place.

The last race of the championship is for mares with up to Sek 250,000 in earnings over the 2140m distance. Noel Baldac hino will be driving number 11 Global Numerous and does not seem that he will be amongst the favourites.Each race in this championship has a first prize of Sek 40,000. This championship saw its first edition in 1969 which was won by Norwegian Karsten Buer. Noel Baldacchino returns to Malta on Thursday and during this trip will be accompanied by Mr Tony Demanuele one of the members of the Malta Racing Club Council.

Noel Baldacchino fil-kampjonat Ewropew

Nhar il-Ħadd li ġej il-ġerrej Noel Baldacchino se jmur l-Isvezja sabiex jirraprezenta lil Malta fil-Kampjonat Ewropew għal ġerrejja professjonali li din is-sena ser isir fil-koros ta’ Solanget u Umea nhar it-Tnejn u t-Tlieta 18 u 19 t’Awissu. F’dan il-kampjonat jieħdu sehem l-aqwa sewwieqa ta’ l-Ewropa li din is-sena barra Baldacchino huma – Hubert Brandstatter Jr (Awstrija), Knud Monster (Danimarka), Mika Forss (Fillandja), Tony Le Beller (Franza), Michael Nimczyk (Ġermanja), Hugo Langeweg Jr (Olanda), Vidar Hop (Norveġja), Branislav Mukic (Serbia), Guillermo Andreau Adover (Spanja) u Bjorn Goop (Svezja). Minn dawn l-aktar wieħed li rebaħ tiġrijiet fis-sena 2013 huwa l-Isvediz Bjorn Goop li minn 2084 tiġrija rebah 367 u qed jittama li jirnexxielu jirbaħ dan il-Kampjonat f’pajjizu. F’dawn l-aħħar snin dan il-kampjonat qed isir kull sentejn peress li jolterna mal-Kampjonat Dinji li wkoll isir kull sentejn.

Is-sewwieqa li jispiċċaw fl-ewwel ħames postijiet ta’ dan il-kampjonat jiksbu d-dritt li jipparteċipaw fil-Kampjonat Dinji li ser isir l-Awstralja fi Frar tas-sena d-dieħla. Is-sena l-oħra l-Kampjonat Dinji ntrebaħ minn Pierre Vercruysse li kien qed jirraprezenta lil Franza filwaqt li l-Kampjonat Ewropew fis-sena 2012 intrebaħ mit-Taljan Enrico Bellei.Il-ġerrejja jingħataw punti skond fejn jidħlu f’kull tiġrija b’ta l-ewwel jieħu 18, tat-tieni 13, it-tielet 10 u r-raba’ 8 punti bil-pjazzamenti ta’ wara jonqsu b’punt kull darba. Skwalifikazzjoni tingħata punt u jekk iz-ziemel ikun skraċċjat is-sewwieq jieħu 6 punti.

Il-Kampjonat jiftaħ fil-korsa ta’ Solanget nhar it-Tnejn fejn is-sewwieqa jkunu fl-azzjoni f’erba’ tiġrijiet. Din il-korsa hija twila 1004m. L-ewwel tiġrija tkun fis-19:08 bl-autostart fuq distanza ta’ 1646m riservata għal zwiemel li għandhom sa 850,00 krona svediza rebh. Noel Baldacchino ser isuq in-numru 10 Pine Rolls li huwa Norveġiz ta’ 6 snin u jidher li mhux ser ikun wieħed mill-favoriti għar-rebħ.It-tieni tiġrija tkun fit-19:52 fuq distanza ta’ 2650m riservata għal zwiemel li għandhom sa 175,00 krona svediza rebħ. Hawnhekk Baldacchino ser isuq in-numru 4 Razza Yamoz u għal darb’oħra mhuwiex fost il-favoriti.

Fit-tiġrija ta’ wara s-sewwieqa ser isuqu zwiemel tar-razza Kallblad fuq distanza ta’ 1646m u għal Baldacchino din zgur li ser tkun l-ewwel esperjenza fuq dawn it-tip ta’ zwiemel. Huwa ser jitlaq bin-numru 6 bin-Norveġiz Hogda Kvikk fejn skond it-tbassir ma jidhirx li ser ikun mal-favoriti.L-aħħar tiġrija f’Solanget titlaq fit-20:36 u fuq distanza ta’ 2148m se jsuqu zwiemel li għandhom sa’ 300,000 Krona Svediza f’rebħ. Hawnhekk jidher li l-polza kienet waħda tajba għal Baldacchino fejn ser isuq ziemel ta’ Robert Bergh Elegance Brodde ikkunsidrat bħala wieħed mill-favoriti għar-rebħ tat-tiġrija. Huwa ser jitlaq bin-numru 3. L-għada s-sewwieqa jsuqu erba’ tiġrijiet oħra fil-korsa ta’ Umaker. L-ewwel tiġrija tkun it-tielet waħda tal-programm għal zwiemel li għandhom sa Sek 525,000 rebħ u Noel Baldacchino ma tantx jidher li għandu polza tajba peress li huwa kkunsidrat bħala l-anqas ziemel li għandu ċans. Hawnhekk fuq distanza ta’ 2140m ser isuq in-numru 3 Rally Swing.

It-tieni tiġrija li ser isuqu hawnhekk tkun fuq zwiemel tar-razza kallblad fuq distanza ta’ 2140m. Noel ser jitlaq bin-numru 7 Angskalla fejn jidher li hu bic-cans li jakkwista pjazzament. Is-seba’ tiġrija tal-programm hija fuq distanza ta’ 1640m u miftuħa għal zwiemel bi kwalunkwe rebħ. Baldacchino ħa jsuq lil Bart Sjohammar bin-numru 9 u jidher li f’din it-tiġrija hemm ziemel li ħa jibda bħala favorit assolut biz-zwiemel l-oħra kollha biċ-ċans li jakkwistaw xi pjazzament.L-aħħar tiġrija f’dan il-kampjonat hija riservata għal dwieb li għandhom sa 250,000 krona svediza f’rebħ b’distanza ta’ 2140m. Noel Baldacchino ħa jsuq in-numru 11 Global Numerous u ma jidhirx li ħa jkun fost il-favoriti għar-rebħ tat-tiġrija.

L-ewwel premju f’kull tiġrija huwa ta’ 40,000 Krona Svediza.Dan il-Kampjonat ilu jsir mis-sena 1969 fejn l-ewwel edizzjon kien rebaħa n-Norveġiz Karsten Buer. Noel Baldacchino jirritorna Malta l-Ħamis u matul dan il-vjaġġ ser ikun akkumpanjat mis-Sur Tony Demanuele li huwa membru tal-Kunsill tal-Malta Racing Club.

About Kenneth

A horse racing enthusiast and journalist. He started his career in 1992 and today is the main correspondent on horse racing for In-Nazzjon, Il-Mument and the Times of Malta. He also writes on a number of international magazines and produces TV programmes for TVM and TVM2. Kenneth is the proud winner of two consecutive awards of the Malta Broadcasting Awards for the best sport programmes with documentaries.

This blog is updated with all of Kenneth's contributions in the media. [read more about Kenneth...]
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