Csaba Tamás representing Farkaslaka (Lupeni) with his horse named Villámlás (Lightning in English) won the 10th Szekler Gallop. After winning their qualifying heats, the following four riders competed Saturday afternoon in the finals: János Alpár, representing the host town of the race, Sepsiszentgyörgy (Sfântu Gheorghe), with his horse named Tip-Top; Csaba Tamás and Villámlás, representing Farkaslaka; Péter Libertényi and his horse named Hilton Haragos from Kézdialmás (Mereni); and Attila Ugron, representing Kézdivásárhely (Târgu Secuiesc) with his horse named Marsal Szultán.
After an initial false start, the four horsemen had to start for the second time, after which Csaba Tamás took the lead immediately. He was closely followed by Péter Libertényi, while the 9th Szekler Gallop winner, János Alpár Fazekas, was in third place and Attila Ugron in fourth, although the distance between Ugron and the first three continuously increased.
Although it seemed at first that the rider of Kézdialmás might be able to take the lead from Csaba Tamás, it did not happen, and the rider of Farkaslaka remained in first place for the entire 1,300-meter-long race. He even increased his lead in the last round.
The final ranking of the race was the same throughout the race: Farkaslaka, Kézdialmás, Sepsiszentgyörgy and Kézdivásárhely.
All four horsemen received a monetary reward, and the main organizer of the race, József Nagy, also presented Csaba Tamás with the Gallop Sword, which is a replica of a Hungarian Hussar saber from 1845 and has been given to the winner of the Szekler Gallop in each year since 2014.
The first three riders of the Szekler Gallop will represent Szeklerland in Budapest in October 2021 at the National Gallop.
The National Gallop (Nemzeti Vágta in Hungarian) is a celebration of Hungarian traditions and the countryside, including traditional Hungarian horseback riding and Hussar traditions. The main attraction of the event is the horse race that any Hungarian citizen aged 18 and older can enter, male or female, without weight restrictions. Each year, around 100 settlements from all over the Carpathian Basin nominate someone for the “Vágta” through regional qualifying races, one of which is the Szekler Gallop.
Title image: Csaba Tamás representing Farkaslaka took the lead right after the start with his horse named Villámlás in the finals of the 10th Szekler Gallop in Sepsiszentgyörgy on June 26, 2021. (Photo: Attila Pinti/szekelyhon.ro)