Golden Spike up close Golden Spike Ostrava
is the most important meeting in the Czech Republic, one of the oldest athletic competitions in Europe. The best athletes in the world
compete in it exclusively at the invitation of its organisers. The selection process is very strict. This year is the 60th
year this world competition will take place in Ostrava
. For many athletes around the world, the World Athletics Continental Tour Gold
series, of which the Golden Spike is a part, will be the most important opportunity to attain Olympic qualification and gain significant points in the world rankings.
So how did it all begin?
The history of Golden Spike Ostrava began in 1961, at a time when no one could have imagined it would become more than just a Czech athletics phenomenon
. Golden Spike Ostrava is known for its unique atmosphere
and its fans, who fill the galleries of the Municipal Stadium in Ostrava. Throughout the meeting’s history, almost all the stars of world sports have presented themselves here – the fantastic Cuban 800 m track runner Alberto Juantorena, Polish sprinter Irena Szewinská, phenomenal Mozambican midfielder Maria Mutola, amazing Moroccan Hicham El Guerrouj, fan favourite Dayron Robles and most notably current pro athlete Usain Bolt. The industrial lookout tower, Bolt Tower
, the superstructure of the blast furnace in Dolní Vítkovice
, also bears his name. And of course, we must not forget the Czechoslovak and Czech stars, from Emil Zátopek
, Ludvík Daňek, through Taťána Netoličková, Jarmila Kratochvílová, Helena Fibingerová to the phenomenal and unsurpassed javelin thrower Jan Železný
60 year jubilee
So how will it be this year? May 19 is fast approaching, but the Coronavirus pandemic is still receding rather slowly. Therefore, some significant restrictions are still in force
on travel, attendance at mass events, etc. In any case, the good news is that an athletics meeting will take place. The question mark still hangs over the participation of spectators. For all eventualities, a live television broadcast
is being prepared. And who can you look forward to this year? The best athlete in this discipline in history, world record holder, World and European Champion, Polka Anita Wlodarczyk, will participate in the hammer throw event. Kenyan World Champion in the 1,500 m, Timothy Cheruiyot, will then run 800 m in an effort to break the Golden Spike Ostrava record, which is currently 1:43.24, held by Kenyan Wilfried Bungei from 2003. The top-level German javelin thrower, Johannes Vetter, and American pole vaulter, Sam Kendricks, will also be competing.