The for­mer Yu­gosla­vian Grand Prix was first held in 1969 at Opatija on a street cir­cuit known as the ‘Monaco’ of the Grand Prix mo­tor cy­cle racing cal­en­dar, be­cause of its spec­tac­u­lar views of the Adri­atic Sea. From 1969 un­til 1977 it hosted the Grand Prix, but as the years pro­gressed it be­came more and more dan­ger­ous for modern ma­chin­ery and, de­spite its scenic set­ting, it was an un­safe track due to high speeds on nar­row roads cou­pled with nu­mer­ous un­mov­able road­side ob­sta­cles, such as trees, stone walls, houses, and the Adri­atic Sea it­self. Dur­ing the 1973 sea­son, sev­eral teams boy­cotted the event due to un­safe track con­di­tions and by 1977 the pro­mot­ers had re­ceived an ul­ti­ma­tum from the FIM that if they did not im­prove the safety of the cir­cuit, the event would be can­celled. Sadly, Gio­vanni Zig­giotto, and Ul­rich Graf were both killed in the 1977 meet­ing and the tragedies saw the venue scrubbed and the GP move to the Ri­jeka cir­cuit for 1978. It hosted a Grand Prix for 13 years but, while a tech­ni­cally dif­fi­cult cir­cuit that pro­vided close racing, its fa­cil­i­ties be­gan to fall be­yond those of tracks else­where and it was fi­nally deleted from the cal­en­dar.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.