It was a great event. The crowds turned up in their thousands and at an estimate, there must have been 7,000 passionate Czech 4X fans - all with air horns, flags and whistles. There was a true party atmosphere and this was going to be a fantastic night of action. They we looking for hometown hero Tomas Slavik to take the victory, but would it be his night? First up, the top riders were introduced to the crowds. Fire, smoke and each rider's choice of music introduced them to the huge crowds. Then the Red Bull Flying Bulls took centre stage. 3 air race planes flew just 50 metres above the crowd doing loops, stalls and fly bys just feet above the crowds. It was truly awesome.
First up were the women. In the small final it was Eva Brauer who took the win from Michaela Berakova to book the final spot on the podium. In the main final Helene Fruhwirth made a great start and did not look back. Riding smooth and pulling a good lead on Simone Jirkova. A great comeback by Natalia Piwowarczyk after a huge bobble on the first step up nearly caused her to crash. Olga Romzaikina from Russia rode great in her first ever ProTour to finish 4th. Helene took the win and with it retained the overall series lead.
In the men's small final, Blake Nielson got the snap and won the race from start to finish. Taking the win and with it the final step on the podium, this was Blake's first ever podium at ProTour and just rewards for him after what has been a terrible couple of years plagued by injury. Nice work Blake.
The main final saw local hero Tomas Slavik taking gate 1, Derbier in 2, Dave Roberts in 3 and Alex Metcalfe in 4. The gate dropped and it was Slavik and Derbier battling into turn 1. Slavik was leading down the second straight with Derbier drifting a little wide looking for space. Through the woods Roberts started to charge on his enduro bike flying through the woods he moved into 3rd relegating Metcalfe to 4th at the hip jump. Slavik was flying and extending his lead. Across the finish it was Slavik ahead of Derbier, Roberts and Metcalfe.
After huge podium celebrations, the Jagermeister guys took control and the after party began. With Fuel Girls blowing fire, dj's, bands and thousands of happy Czech fans, this race was the perfect showcase for 4X ProTour, the sport of 4X and all the riders.
The final round of 4X ProTour is on Saturday September 5th, at Malmedy, in Belgium. The overall title is still very much up for grabs as we expect Scott Beaumont to return from injury to battle with Quentin Derbier, Hannes Slavik and Simon Waldburger. It's going to come down to the wire and you won't want to miss it. Stay tuned!
Photos: © 4XProTour