SWINDON number one Peter Kildemand got his European Championship campaign off to an impressive start with second place in the opening round in Germany this evening.

The Dane only made the final by finishing second in the last chance semi in Gustrow, having scored nine from his five qualifying rides, but beat off the challenge of Poles Tomasz Gollob and Janusz Kolodziej to finish second behind eventual winner Nicki Pedersen.

It initially looked as though Kildemand would struggle to make an impact as he missed the start in his first ride and finished at the back, but he quickly made amends with victory over Pedersen, Andreas Jonsson and Christian Hefenbrock in his second.

Kildemand held off Adrian Miedzinski to win his third ride, putting himself in contention, but in the very next race he found himself at the back again in a race won by Emil Sayfutdinov.

His place in the race-off was secured with a win over GP star Martin Smolinski, before making it through to the final where he secured second.

The next round of the series is in Togliatti, Russia, in a fortnight.