BOSS Neil Middleditch believes Pirates supporters are yet to see the best of Josh Grajczonek – as he predicts the rising star will improve again in 2014.
Grajczonek made a big name for himself at Wimborne Road last season by playing a pivotal role in the Dorset club’s remarkable Elite League title triumph.
The Australian was signed as a full asset and rewarded with a team place next season after racking up 38 paid 43 points from a mammoth 26 play-off heats.
Grajczonek, who scored 95+11 in 13 meetings for Poole in 2013, gave another glimpse of his potential on Saturday by impressing in the Australian Championship.
The 23-year-old finished fifth in the opening round of the three-meeting series and Middleditch is confident there will be more to come in Britain next season.
He told the Daily Echo: “We don’t want to put too much weight on Josh’s shoulders.
“He was a league winner for us and proved a real trump card last season.
“He is in Australia racing against good people and he is getting good results. We will certainly see some improvements from Josh next season.”
As the battle for the national title got under way at Kurri Kurri, Grajczonek registered 12 points from his five heats before finishing runner-up to former club-mate Chris Holder in a hard-fought B Final.
Middleditch added: “It was a good performance from him in a strong field. It is great for them to ride out there and it keeps the riders race fresh.”
After winning the B Final, former Pirates captain Holder went on to finish second to ex-Poole star Jason Doyle in the main event, with Cameron Woodward third and Troy Batchelor fourth.
Holder’s younger brother Jack, who Pirates are keen to secure as a club asset, again pointed to his exciting future in the sport by scoring nine points in the heats and finishing third in the B Final.
The series continues at Undera on Wednesday before the finale in Adelaide on Saturday.
Kurri Kurri top-nine heat scores: Doyle 14, Woodward 13, Batchelor 12, Grajczonek 12, C Holder 11, J Holder 9, Masters 9, Fricke 9, Tungate 9.
B Final: C Holder, Grajczonek, J Holder, Masters.
A Final: Doyle, C Holder, Woodward, Batchelor.