Speed skater Sáblíková wins cycle title
First to speed skating, or rather cycling. Five times speed skating world champion, Martina Sáblíková, has notched up her first cycling title. Sáblíková together with professional cyclist Martina Růžičková, won the Czech 25 kilometre womens’ time trial over the weekend with a time of 33 minutes.
The 22-year-old has regularly competed on two wheels during the summer to keep in condition for the winter season but in spite of some near misses had never come first. “It was certainly a tough race, it was up hill and down hill. We changed positions a lot and I think the tactics were good. So it worked out well”. Sáblíková says the cycling win confirms her feeling that she is in good condition for speed skating, in particular with the Vancouver Winter Olympics at the start of 2010.
Bohemians all even after first derby clash
Turning to the top domestic football league. There was particular attention on a derby game with a difference over the weekend. It was the first league clash between bitter enemies Bohemians Prague and Bohemians 1905. The two clubs have been fighting a legal battle for the last four years over which of them is the real Bohemians and has the right to the kangaroo symbol after a previous club went bankrupt. Bohemians Prague had at one stage threatened not to go ahead with the match because of the enmity between them. In the end the situation on the field mirrored that off it: a scoreless draw.
Jablonec set pace for under pressure Prague giants
Elsewhere in the league, Jablonec are still the surprise leaders of the domestic Gambrinus competition after a slender 1:0 win against Mladá Boleslav. But attention on Monday is focused on another derby clash between the Prague rivals Sparta and Slavia. Both clubs are recovering from mid-week defeats in the European League which have left them bottom of their groups. Thursday’s 5-1 hammering of Slavia at home by French club Lille has intensified speculation that manager Karel Jarolím’s job could be on the line if they lose.
Under-20 Czech team shine in World Cup
Staying with football, while the Czech senior football team are still uncertain about qualifying for next year’s World Cup in South Africa, the under-20 team is already competing in the finals in Egypt ― and doing well. The Czechs booked a place in the last 16 against Hungary on Tuesday after coming second in the group stage. In total, they notched up two wins and a draw against Brazil. For team manager Jakub Dovalil the second place and fixture against Hungary was the best possible outcome.
Sixteeen seeks to make it three in a row
The country’s premier equestrian cross country event, the Velká Pardubická steeplechase is coming up next weekend. The winning horse for the past two years is Sixteen, which set a record time in 2008. Sixteen is seeking to make it three victories in a row on Sunday. That it would leave it only one short of equalling the record number of wins at the steeplechase. Sixteen’s owner is Czech film producer Jaroslav Bouček. He says he will not be putting a bet on his horse, but only because it is the overwhelming favourite and the odds are too short.