Jason Crump defied the pain from his ankle injury to win the Italian Grand Prix at Lonigo and extend his World Championship lead to a massive 57 points.

Neither of Crump's closest rivals, Greg Hancock and Nicki Pedersen, made the Final so Crump could mathematically clinch the title at Malilla in a fortnight.

Scott Nicholls equalled his best-ever Grand Prix result with second place overall, and Hans Andersen added another rostrum finish with third position after heading the qualifying scores. Leigh Adams completed the Finalists in
fourth place.

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Andersen led the Final but was overtaken by Crump going into the second lap, and the effect of that pass created space for Nicholls to come through into second.

There was also plenty of drama in the semi-finals, first when Matej Zagar was excluded after going down on the entrance to turn three when Nicholls drove through hard on the inside.

Nicholls then took full advantage of the re-run to follow Andersen home for a place in the Final - and put Greg Hancock out of contention.

The second semi also saw fierce action as Crump defended second place ahead of Danish duo Bjarne and Nicki Pedersen, who tried all they could to find a way through.

Crump said: "I'm a really happy man after this result. Hans had been going very well and had gate one in both his semi and the Final. But I think I put a little doubt in his mind when I worked him hard in our race during the qualifiers, and that paid off for me.

"I'm taking things one Grand Prix at a time at the moment, and I want to have as good a second half of the season as the first."

Nicholls has moved into a top eight position after finally converting a semi-final place into an appearance in the Final. He said: "I'm pleased to get the result after battling hard throughout the night, and it was lucky that I got a second chance in the semi-final. I'm going all out for a top eight place this year, and that's the reason
why I'm not doing the qualifiers for next season - I want to get through on merit."

Andersen, who was replacing the unwell Tony Rickardsson, will continue his mid-season stint in the series in Malilla as a Wild Card. He said: "I made my only mistake of the night in the Final, but Jason is a tremendous rider and a true Champion."

Jason Crump 25, Scott Nicholls 20, Hans Andersen 18, Leigh Adams 16, Bjarne Pedersen 10, Matej Zagar 10, Greg Hancock 9, Nicki Pedersen 9, Andreas Jonsson 9, Tomasz Gollob 7, Jarek Hampel 5, Niels Kristian Iversen 5, Antonio Lindback 5, Lee Richardson 4, Piotr Protasiewicz 3, Mattia Carpanese 0.

Jason Crump 140, Greg Hancock 83, Nicki Pedersen 74, Tomasz
Gollob 62, Leigh Adams 62, Andreas Jonsson 59, Scott Nicholls 59, Bjarne Pedersen 58, Matej Zagar 54, Jarek Hampel 53, Antonio Lindback 45, Hans Andersen 43, Tony Rickardsson 41, Lee Richardson 30, Niels-Kristian Iversen
30, Piotr Protasiewicz 14.