Golden Helmet Race: A Historic Motorcycle Competition Returns to Prague After Seven Years
The Comeback of a Prestigious Competition
The Golden Helmet motorcycle race, a much-anticipated event in the world of motorcycling, is set to make a comeback in 2023 after a seven-year hiatus. First launched in 1929, this competition has witnessed participation from some of the biggest names in the sport. The upcoming edition marks the return of the race to Marketa Stadium in Prague after a gap of 32 years, stirring excitement among enthusiasts and spectators worldwide.
A Glance at the Golden History
The Golden Helmet race, also known as the Zlatá přilba, is a prominent motorcycle speedway competition held annually in the Czech Republic. It is revered as the oldest motorcycle speedway race in Europe, making it one of the most prestigious in the world. The race was initiated by three motorsport enthusiasts František Hladěna, Adolf Trnka, and Ladislav Polák. The first 15 events were held on the 2400 meters long turf racetrack of Velká pardubická Steeplechase in Pardubice, from 1929 to 1963.
Since 1964, the competition has been held on the standard flat oval cinder track of the Svítkov Stadium in Pardubice. The wide track of Pardubice enables up to six riders to compete in the event. However, in 2023, the race will return to its original home in Prague’s Marketa Stadium.
Notable Winners of the Past
The Golden Helmet race has seen participation from world-renowned riders. Among the notable past winners are nine-time world champion Ivan Mauger and six-time world champion Ove Fundin. The last edition of the race, held in 2016, was won by Czech rider Vaclav Milik, marking a significant achievement for the host nation. The race has not only celebrated champions but also witnessed Speedway World Champions who have started at the Golden Helmet of Pardubice race but never won the trophy.
The Race Format
The Golden Helmet race follows a specific format. In the first round, 24 riders are divided into four groups of six. Three riders from each group advance to the quarterfinal stage where they join 12 seeded riders. The same format is followed in the quarterfinal, with three riders from each group progressing to the semi-final. In the semi-final, two groups of six riders race three times, with the top three riders from each group progressing to the final.
The Return and Its Significance
The return of the Golden Helmet race in 2023 is regarded as a significant event in the motorcycling world. It not only marks the revival of a historic race but also signifies the perseverance of the sport amid global challenges. The event is expected to attract a large number of participants and spectators, further adding to the legacy of the Golden Helmet race. As the world gears up for the comeback of this prestigious event, one can only anticipate the thrill and excitement that the 2023 edition of the Golden Helmet race will bring.
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