Tartu Maraton's course on the 6th of December. Photo: Tiit Tammemäe
As of today, the legendary Tartu Marathon is just over two months away, taking place on the 18th of February. Let’s take a look at the possible scenarios for the infamous Estonian ski festival.
„Basically we are preparing for three scenarios: A) there is enough snow and the marathon will be held on the original 63 km course; B) marathon will take place mostly on natural snow and on the original course, but in a shorter version; C) Tartu Maraton will be held in Tehvandi on the course made of artificial snow,“ said the Race Director Indrek Kelk. „We hope, that the very least we could organize is the option C, just like the 44th Tartu Maraton,“ he added.
Last year’s plan C was actually a success, according to the organizers and participants. „We did hesitate how we could put thousands of skiers to a small loop, but actually it worked out pretty well, because we had six mass starts. Also the length of the loop was enough to avoid the faster skiers catching the slower ones,“ Kelk said. „Most of the skiers were happy that the marathon didn’t take place on the 63 km distance, because last year’s winter was bad and there weren’t enough possibilities to train.“
Obviously there is a lot of time until the first decision’s about 45th Tartu Maraton’s fate are made. „These decisions, if and how Tartu Maraton will take place, will probably be made on the first days of the marathon week. If there is enough natural snow and the conditions are good and stable, then we are trying to make the decisions earlier,“ the Race Director said.
Long-awaited winter has arrived to Estonia, which means that finally there is snow on the Tartu Maraton’s course. In the start area, Tehvandi, there is a 4 km lap, possible to ski CT and on the last 8 km of the track (Hellenurme - Elva) it is possible to ski FT, preferably with older skis.
45th Tartu Maraton takes place on the 18th of February. The best prices are available up to December 8th. Tartu Maraton is a classic race and also belongs to the FIS Worldoppet CUP.
Info and registration: https://www.tartumaraton.ee/en/events/suusamaraton/45/