Goni Pony 2017 Cycling Event
On 3 June, the traditional cycling race Goni Pony (cross-country) took place in Kranjska Gora, which brought together a record number of participants—more than 900 people. Among them, there were cyclists from Slovenia, Italy, Austria and Croatia.
The participants overcame the ascent to the mountain pass Vršič with a height of 1,611 metres above sea level. The total distance travelled is 13.5 kilometres, including 24 serpentines and sections of rough terrain with a height difference of more than 800 metres, including an 11 percent slope.
A cult mountain mini-bicycle, which was used by several generations of cyclists, has been assisting the Goni Pony participants for the third year in a row in crossing the route through the highest mountain pass in Slovenia.
This year, Goni Pony has beat two records at once—by the number of participants and by the winner’s final result. In the first year of the event, 284 participants won the Vršič Mountain Pass. Last year, there were already 573 people, and this year, the number of participants exceeded 900 persons.
At 2:00 p.m., the event participants held a training race around the city, and at 3:00 p.m., the official start was given at the Lek Hotel towards Vršič. Primož Jurak was the fastest to reach Vršič. However, last year he was the second. His result — 44 minutes and 30 seconds — is a new record of the competition. In the women’s standings, the best result was shown by a former professional cyclist Laura Šimenc — 52 min and 10 sec.
Participants’ costumes became a real highlight of the race. Many cyclists took the request of the event organizers with a particular seriousness. They dressed retro style uniforms from the 70–80ies of the last century. The most numerous was the team of 15 friends from Ljubljana and Velenje who especially for this race ordered the uniform of the Yugoslav national team in basketball of 1981. The team included 12 young men and 3 girls—students, classmates and just friends aged 19 to 25 years.