Jiří Daler

* 1940  

  • “At that time, I was employed in the Skoda factory, back then called Fučík's race, and I thought of nothing more than cycling. But, of course, I could not make my living on that. The only relief for training I had was that twice a week I worked until eleven instead of two. Otherwise, I had to work those eight hours daily total.”

  • “Once the Znojmo-Brno race took place, and I was on a bike - I had the Favourite bike already — got into that group of racing cyclists. And not even a devil would get me out of that group. In the end it turned out that a referee arrived on a motorcycle and drove me from there. But my dad's fellow employee, whom I knew from the holiday brigade, invited me to a group meeting, which was Slavia Žabovřesky back then. I came there and it turned out that I was at a meeting on Monday and I was racing on Saturday. I got such an interim card that I have a medical examination and that I am a member of the Slavia Žabovřesky club and I was competing in the first races. And because my preparation with friends was good, I even won the race. It was in Třebíč and I still remember it very well.”

  • “At the time there were problems with exit clauses, visas… Even though I was already in France, I couldn't go through many races in Italy, I had no visa. When I wanted to go to Germany, I had to either go for a visa with a passport to Lyon, or send a passport there by mail to give me a stamp that I could go to Germany. I couldn't race much in Belgium because I didn't have a visa. There were just complications. For this reason, I did not return to Czechoslovakia between races, because I would not be allowed to go to the next one. Only after six days, after the end of the summer season, I returned because I actually had nowhere to be. I was always released, but I had to go back. Or I didn't, but I'd have to stay outside. And finally it turned out that I was let go to some twenty-four hour racing in Portugal, and then they said, 'Done, it is over. You are finished at the summer season.‘ At CSTV they still promised me that they would let me go for six days, but... they didn't let me go anymore. Well, I ended my career.”

  • “Of course, after each trip we had to tell who we saw and so on. That worked so well in the army.” Interviewer: “Have they ever asked you to find out any information? Or have they ever threatened you apart from meeting employees abroad or something alike? “I wasn't in charge of anything like that. Rather, we told them we saw a German military convoy, or a similar bluff.”

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    Praha, 17.01.2019

    (audio)
    duration: 01:39:47
    media recorded in project Stories of the 20th Century TV
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They told me: ‘Done, that is the end’

During a persuit race around the time of the Tokio Olympics in 1964
During a persuit race around the time of the Tokio Olympics in 1964
photo: archiv pamětníka

He was born on March 8, 1940 in Brno-Královo Pole. Since his youth he devoted himself to sports. At the age of sixteen he started racing on a bike, first for TJ Slavia Žabovřesky, then for TJ Favorit Brno and in the army for Pardubice and later for Brno Dukla. After the war he returned to Favorit, he was employed in electrical engineering and kept training before and after work. He raced various types of tracks and road races. He was the first Czechoslovak cyclist to win the bronze medal at the 1964 World Championships in Paris. He won the individual fighter race at the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games. He brought silver and bronze medals from individual and team races from the 1965-67 World Championship. In Mexico he set world records of four and five kilometers in 1967. In 1969-70 he started for the French professional team Frimatic-de Gribaldy. After that he was not allowed to continue his racing career and became a coach. Since 2008 he has been managing the South Moravian Olympics Endowment Fund.