The largest cycling race on the Czech roads, and traditionally the one with the highest quality field, has changed its name. The thirteenth annual running of the UCI Class 1 stage race, that has to date been known as Czech Tour, will from this year bear the name SAZKA Tour. The race runs through four regions and takes place from the 5th to 8th of August 2021.
This year the organisers again promise an exceptional sports experience as well as a very attractive accompanying programme. For 2021 they have prepared several special bonuses. In addition to the new titular partner - Sazka, the most important thing is the new race management.
As last year, the Race Director will be Leopold König, a great figure in Czech and world cycling. Former elite Czech cyclist whose greatest achievements included seventh place in the overall ranking of the Tour de France 2013, and sixth place on the Giro d´Italia. König also represented the Czech Republic at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro 2016, where he finished eleventh in the individual time trial. Robert Kolář, member of the Supervisory Board of Sazka, was appointed vice-chairman of the Organising Committee, and race founder, Jaroslav Vašíček, moved to the position of technical and safety director.
“I am extremely happy that today, the 25th March, I can officially announce that Sazka has become the new major partner of the race, and we believe that with our joint efforts we can achieve higher objectives, right up to the category World Tour,” said Vašíček, revealing the bold plans.
“We are entering a new era and new experiences in life. We very much look forward to this work and I am aware that we have a unique opportunity to make the SAZKA Tour one of the most prestigious cycling events in the world,” added Leopold König, who won the Czech Tour twice, at the peak of his career in 2010 and 2013.
“For 65 years Sazka has been seen as a key partner for Czech sport. We are happy that along with being a general partner of the Czech Olympic Committee we can also add sponsorship of the largest cycling race on the Czech roads. I firmly believe that together with the organisers we will take this renowned race to a higher level,” added Robert Kolář, member of the Sazka supervisory board.
Further excellent news for this race are the top teams already confirmed, led by the defending champion of the last two years, Team BikeExchange (so far Mitchelton Scott), from which Danien Howson triumphed in the individual race last year. The full starting list in this time of Covid is currently being finalised, and the organisers expect that we can anticipate excellent competition of a standard not previously seen on Czech and Moravian roads.
This year’s SAZKA Tour route is 731 km long, climbs 12600 m and runs through the Olomouc, Moravian-Silesian, Pardubice and Zlín regions. The route is interspersed with attractive spots for spectators, and these spots are linked to the mountain and sprint bonuses. In the international peloton, for example, the following are well-known: Dlouhé Stráně, Červenohorské sedlo, Videlský kříž, Ecce Homo, Pustevny and Bumbálka. It is interesting that for the first time in the history of the SAZKA Tour, the finish will be on the hill of the Dlouhé stráně pumped storage hydro-electricity facility. During the race the riders twice undertake this most demanding climb in the Czech Republic.
Only 20 teams will start the SAZKA Tour, and they will be selected by the race management depending on UCI ranking and current form. A total of 140 riders will compete in the selected seven-member teams from the best international and Cech cycling teams from the World Teams, Pro Continental teams and national select teams made up of riders in the Elite and U23 categories.
SAZKA Tour is the only stage cycling race of this importance in the Czech Republic, and it takes place each year in August. Over time, the SAZKA Tour started to gain in prestige among the European cycling races, and with its increasing popularity the route was extended. Today it is one of the important European cycling races. The race is part of the UCI Europe Tour, which means that the competing cyclists must have a UCI (International Cycling Union) licence. The organiser of the SAZKA Tour is TTV Sport Group CZ and Czech Cycling Tour s.r.o.
As in 2020, the official provider of transport for the SAZKA Tour will be Best of British Cars - Jaguar Land Rover Ostrava. Great thanks belong to Sazka a.s., the state institutions that contributed financially to the running of the event, the National Sports Agency, Czech Tourism, the Olomouc Region, the Moravian-Silesian Region, and the towns of Frýdek-Místek, Uničov, Štemberk and Šumperk.
About SAZKA a.s.
SAZKA a.s. is the largest and oldest lottery company in the Czech Republic with an approximate 95% share of the lottery, and similar games, market. The company's main lottery products are number lotteries with the most famous being the Sportka game. In addition to number lotteries, its products also include scratch cards, sports betting odds and high-turnover games. The second pillar is made up of non-lottery services, in particular the largest virtual mobile network operator in the Czech Republic, SAZKAmobil, mobile phone credit top up, and the facilitating of payments for goods and services, or the sale of tickets. SAZKA a.s. provides its products through an exclusive sales network of over 7 200 outlets spread across the entire Czech Republic, and also online through the game website www.sazka.cz. SAZKA a.s. is a member of the international investment group KKCG, active in 11 countries on 4 continents. SAZKA a.s. is part of the international lottery holding Sazka Group (which also has ownership interests in the Greek lottery OPAP, Italian Lotto and Austrian Casinos Austria). For more information see www.sazka.cz and www.kkcg.eu.
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