Jiří Hledík Ultracycling
česky česky    English English

Racer’s profile

Personal data

  • My name is Jiri Hledík, friends call me "Jira".
  • I am 58 (born on 29 June 1957).
  • I grew up with sports, my father was on the national fotball team.
  • I have a degree in nuclear engineering (Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Czech Technical University).
  • I have been married for 35 years - my wife Jindriska has supported me ever since.
  • We have two children - son Vojta (30) and daughter Anicka (26).
  • I have been working as a nuclear engineer for 32 years (in NPP Jaslovske Bohunice, Dukovany, Temelin).
  • I work for CEZ Group as manager of the Design Authority department of NPP.
  • I mainly enjoy cycling but I also like skiing, climbing and gardening very much.

  

Why cycling

I definitely wasn’t born a cyclist. I started when most of the people restrain from their sporting activities. However, sport was a part of my youth; I focused mainly on athletics, gymnastics, downhill skiing, collective sports, and orienteering. In 1976 I became a national champion in team orienteering. Since then I haven’t continued with the top level sporting activities. Not until 1996 when I started to climb with my son, which we did for next five years.

I started with cycling unexpectedly when my son went to study abroad. It was a coincidence caused by a very unfortunate accident of one member of the cycling outfit from Jeseník around Pavel Dědic and Kamil Podhajský. And so it happened that my first cycling challenge was to replace a friend that tragically died in a team that went to see Tour de France 2002. Since then I have dedicated more and more time to cycling, but as a pure amateur. I was attracted mainly to long distance races, marathons, and 24-hour challenges.

Since 2007 I have been regularly participating in the VELO series marathons. I was very influenced by meeting a Czech long distance cyclist Hanka Ebertová. Our cooperation begun after her start at RAAM, and lead to our successful appearance at 24-hour challenge in Lichnov where we won the two person mixed category in a new record. At the end of 2007 we founded Czech Ultracycling Team, and started with preparations of the first project of this team – RAAM 2009. Its target was to take part in the most difficult ultramarathon in the world in the two person mixed category.

2008 was a season where I finished my first ultramarathon, and my first stage race. We agreed with Hanka to postpone our start at RAAM at least a year, and so season 2009 became to me a preparation season for this race.

In 2009 I took part in several marathons of the 53x11-series as a training for my second ultramarathon (RACE). It was this very race where I passed the qualification criteria for RAAM in a "Solo Racer" category even though the category 50+ was not listed (yet the RAAM organizers evaluated ranking in this category and given the fact that I had finished first among all the 50-year-olds, they gave me the qualification). Also in that year the final decision was made that Hanka and I won't be continuing in the preparation for RAAM together and we both will be going through the races, under the CUT heading, individually with our individual teams. Thus I addressed Josef Trchalík and decided to continue working with him on the RAAM project preparation to start in category "Two Person Male".

I rode another 2 ultramarathons in the 2010 season. DOS RAS EXTREME in Slovenia was indeed a very tough test for me - excellent competitors, rough conditions. On the 1.100-kilometer mark I was still in the 4th place out of all 13 participants in 50+ category - only an hour behind the top three but due to our mistake we hit the time limit about 120km before finish line and we were disqualified. Even that was a precious experience for me and my team and it definitely didn't put us down. On the contrary! After the DOS race I ended the collaboration with Josef Trchalík. I wasn't simply the perfect partner for him, we didn't constitute an equal pair. He was more experienced and his efficiency was higher regarding his age and cycling history. At RACE, second ultramarathon of the season, we proved that I am seeking competitors in the 50+ category in the states of the Visegrad Four. I finished first, our time was by more than 4,5 hours shorter than the year before and we proved the constantly increasing efficiency. Then it has come to a decision to stop looking for a partner for a team pair and I figured it would be the best to race at RAAM in the "Solo Male 50+" category. We definitively chose the year 2012 to be the one and we adjusted the racing plan of the season 2011 accordingly.

In the last season 2011 I took part in 2 ultramarathons as well. My team and I decided to ride the DOS RAS EXTREME again and then the most difficult ultramarathon in Europe – RAA EXTREME (Race Around Austria). We couldn't have scheduled more demanding races as a preparation for RAAM. We finished on the 6th place at DOS RAS EXTREME in the 50+ category and we didn't fulfill our goal to finish among the top three racers and squeeze the final time under 60 hours. Stomach issues stood in the way as well as a flu I had to deal with in the final part part of race. RAA EXTREME was absolutely new experience for us and a challenge - we had never gone this far nonstop in one race (2.164km) and such a high elevation (28.000m) and that's why our only goal was to finish the race in time. And we did it! Only 21 ultramarathoners enrolled in this extremely difficult race and only 16 of them showed at the start, and just 2 in my category! In the beginning of the second half we were still on the 11th place of all but eventually we finished 15th. For the first time in four years I have been riding marathons a professional doctor - Zdenek Janeček - was keeping an eye on my health condition and he helped me a great deal with my final result. For me and my team it was an incredible experience and "an exam we passed". Thus we finished this season satisfied with all the plans fulfilled. Every test race we participated in showed that there was no better way for us to prepare for RAAM. Even Christoph Strasser himself, 2011 RAAM winner, confirmed it while communicating about this with Vojta. And so we are not making any changes in our plans. We have begun the final stage of preparations for the longest and most difficult road ultramarathon on the planet, RAAM 2012 .

Jíra profil závodníka 2014 CZ 147.71 KB 03. 02. 2014, 19:26:33
2016-01-17 09:41:41
Jiří Hledík
Ultracycling for Charity

Sponsors

Main sponsors:

Atexsport Tufo

Medial partners:

Český rozhlas Radiožurnál Český rozhlas České Budějovice Český rozhlas Hradec Králové Česká televize

I`m member of Czech
ultracycling team

CUT RAAM CUT RAAM

Ultracycling for Charity

Ultracycling for Charity