He came, he saw, he conquered

Who is this young man who gave a lesson to the creme-de-la-creme of world cycling at Tour de France in 2020? Tadej Pogačar is a wonder boy who at the age of 21 became the second-youngest champion of the most prestigious cycling race in the world. No one expected that he would beat his role model and fellow countryman, Primož Roglič, who is also one of the best cyclists in the world, and win the famous Tour. Pogačar, nicknamed "Pogi star" by the world media, and his UAE team shocked the entire cycling world with an incredible race to win over the cycling throne. He proved that he was not just a one-time winner when he won the 108th famous French loop with great confidence for the second time in a row. In the past few years, this was only achieved by the British cyclist Chris Froome.

Yellow jersey for the overall victory
2021 and 2020
Polka dot jersey, leader of the best climber classification
2021 and 2020
White jersey for the best young rider
2021 and 2020

Tadej Pogačar’s other top achievements

See a selection of Tadej Pogačar’s most prominent achievements at international races and at Tour of Slovenia.

bronze Olympic medal in road racing
2021
La Vuelta - 3rd place in overall rankings
2019
Tour of Slovenia Winner
2021

Overall wins at other races

  • Race Liege−Bastogne−Liege (2021)
  • Race from the Tyrrhenian to the Adriatic Sea (2021)
  • Tour of Valencia (2020)
  • Volta ao Algarve (Portugal) (2019)
  • Tour of California (2019)
Source: STA

Tour de France - A new, golden chapter in Slovenian cycling history

Tadej Pogačar and Primož Roglič wrote a new chapter in Slovenian and world cycling history with their double victory at Champs-Élysées of the Tour de France in 2020. No other Slovenian has ever achieved this result, except for individual stage wins. No wonder that Slovenians started calling the race Slovenian Tour de France. Other Slovenian cyclists have also been inspired by the success of the exceptional ‘Pogi’ and ‘Rogla’Luka Mezgec (BikeExchange) was close to winning stages in the 2020 Tour de France, as he came second on two different occasions. He took fourth place in the last stage of this year’s Tour. At this year’s edition of the Tour, Matej Mohorič excelled with two stage wins, while also winning the Tour’s longest stage. In addition, his team, Bahrain Victorious, also won in the team classification.

From football to cycling

Sport is in Slovenians’ blood. It would be difficult to list all the successes that Slovenian athletes have had. We are inspired by our wonderful green environment, so it is not surprising that the majority of Slovenians love outdoor sports activities perceiving them as something obvious. This is how Tadej Pogačar began his sports career. With a ball on the pitch. As a child, he played football in his hometown near Kamnik at the foot of Velika Planina, and he was quite talented. He got into cycling when his older brother started training with the Rog Ljubljana cycling club and a little later he joined the club as "Little Pogi". Already as a boy he was included in the national cycling team, where he continually achieved good results. He was noticed by the UAE team, with whom he signed in July 2018. Since 2019 he has been racing at the highest level of cycling worldwide.

Source: STA

Chasing the cycling throne

If you think that Tadej Pogačar only shone at the Tour, you are wrong. In 2019, he came as a rookie to the Volta ao Algarve and beat the entire cycling elite. This was followed by the Amgen Tour of California, where he was the youngest winner of this cycling race in the USA. At the La Vuelta, one of the three major cycling races in the world, where Primož Roglič took the victory, Pogačar also stood on the winning stage (third place). Pogačar announced his winning streak in 2020 at the Tour of Valencia, where he was the overall winner. The prestigious Tour de France was the crème de la crème of his journey to the world cycling Olympus.   

Tadej Pogačar continues his winning streak in the 2021 season. He won the Italian race from the Tyrrhenian to the Adriatic Sea and the Belgian race Liege−Bastogne−Liege. He also shone and won the overall race at the Tour of Slovenia. The race in his homeland was only an introduction to his decisive march towards the new victory of Tour 2021. Pogačar spent most stages in yellow and won a fair advantage, ensuring that the Slovenian anthem once again resonated in Paris.

What does Slovenia have that other giants don't?  

While enjoying the epic achievements of Slovenian cyclists and other top athletes, many of you might ask yourselves, what does this nation of 2 million have so that it can shine on all sport stages? Well, we could discuss this for hours. But we can point out a few reasons for the success of sport in Slovenia. 

Explore

Love on a bicycle

Tadej is not just passionate about cycling. He also found the love of his life on a bicycle. His girlfriend Urška Žigart is also an outstanding road cyclist. She began her cycling career in the Slovenian club BTC City Ljubljana. In an effort to obtain a World Tour licence, she entered into a partnership with the Italian team Alé Cipollini in 2019 and competed under the joint name Alé BTC Ljubljana. She is currently competing for the Australian Team BikeExchange. In 2020, she won the national time trial championship. It seems that Tadej’s success and her change of team have had a positive effect on the 24-year-old cyclist from Slovenska Bistrica, as she achieved her first notable victory in international races in 2021 winning the last stage of the Tour of Valencia. 

Slovenia – the land of champions

Slovenia is a true phenomenon in sporting success. Our athletes achieve great things and win medals in numerous sports. In terms of sporting achievements per capita, Slovenia certainly belongs at the very top in the world. This is why it’s not surprising that sport in Slovenia was honoured with its own national holiday.

Explore

Places where Tadej Pogačar grew up

Meet the places beneath the mighty peaks of the he Kamnik-Savinja Alps, where Tadej Pogačar grew up. Discover the beauty of the Alpine landscape, the Velika Planina pastures, the medieval town of Kamnik and a number of other interesting sights in the area surrounding Pogačar's birthplace Klanec near Komenda.

Explore

Are you feeling buzzed from cycling euphoria?

Unleash it by going on a cycling trip around green Slovenia, across the picturesque landscape, on the asphalt or across the ridges and slopes, through charming towns and villages. There are more than enough possibilities.

10 reasons why you should go cycling around Slovenia

Slovenia is a paradise for cyclists. Cycling is one of the most popular activities among Slovenians. The successes of Slovenian cyclists at top cycling races additionally boost the enthusiasm for cycling. The diverse landscape is the perfect venue for all kinds of cycling – road to mountain cycling, family cycling or long-distance challenges. Discover more reasons why it is worth visiting Slovenia by bike.

More

10 reasons why you should go cycling around Slovenia

10 reasons why you should go cycling around Slovenia

Slovenia is a paradise for cyclists. Cycling is one of the most popular activities among Slovenians. The successes of Slovenian cyclists at top cycling races additionally boost the enthusiasm for cycling. The diverse landscape is the perfect venue for all kinds of cycling – road to mountain cycling, family cycling or long-distance challenges. Discover more reasons why it is worth visiting Slovenia by bike.

More

Cycling among vineyards

Cycling among vineyards

Enjoy the charms of Slovenia’s wine-growing regions by bike. Take a ride among vineyards and wine cellars. Regain your strength by treating yourself to some delicious local cuisine.

More

Cross-country cycling

Cross-country cycling

If you like to conquer steep slopes or descend along forest trails, you will find many reasons to be excited in Slovenia. Diverse paths lead to magnificent views and picturesque valleys.

More

Explore towns by bike

Explore towns by bike

Choose the greenest way to explore Slovenian towns. Many towns have bicycle rental systems in place. You can also join guided bike tours offering a different urban life experience.

More

Do you have a competitive spirit?

Do you have a competitive spirit?

Join one of Slovenia’s many recreational cycling events – from the Franja Marathon cycling "celebration", to the retro experience of conquering the Vršič Pass on a legendary Pony bicycle. Or just cheer for professional cyclists competing in prestigious races.

More

Active in Slovenia? Nothing easier than that!

In Slovenia, it is difficult to find an excuse that there is nothing to do. Seniors or young people can ride a bike, either a traditional one or an E-bike. You can explore Slovenia on foot – front, back, left, and right. Or you indulge in more adrenaline-pumping adventures.

On-road biking

Road biking is very common in Slovenia. Numerous trails run on various terrains in a clean natural environment.

On-road biking

More

The Most Beautiful Biking Trails

Pick an unforgettable cycling experience on some of the most beautiful paths.

The Most Beautiful Biking Trails

More

An explosion of adrenaline-filled fun

Are you in pursuit of adrenaline-filled adventures? Pick your favourites!

An explosion of adrenaline-filled fun

More

Long-distance trails

Long-distance trails run across mountain peaks, through valleys, and to the sea.

Long-distance trails

More

Slovenia – top hiking destination

Hiking in Slovenia rules! Find out why.

Slovenia – top hiking destination

More

Explore the green destinations of Slovenia by e-bike

Discover green Slovenia in a simple and sustainable way – by e-bike.

Explore the green destinations of Slovenia by e-bike

More

Stories from Slovenia

Sign up for our monthly newsletter to receive a green piece of Slovenia in your inbox, and learn about holidays, seasonal offers, upcoming events and travel options.

Share with friends

Add to favourites Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Vkontakte Recommend to a friend