Virtual run of Tartu Forest Marathon united almost 4000 running fans from all over the world
Family Vana on the track, author: Jaagup Vana
According to the preliminary results, 3964 runners and walkers took part in the virtual run of the 38th Tartu Forest Marathon. The race was held between May 1st to May 17th and in addition to Estonians, runners from 34 foreign countries were represented among the participants.
“The interest in the virtual race turned out to be much higher than we first expected. We would like to thank all the participants who accepted the new format so well! We are very pleased that you helped to continue the tradition of the biggest cross-country run in the Baltics in this difficult year,” says Indrek Kelk, the Race Director. “I am also extremely pleased that the virtual format made it possible to expand the event to all the corners of the world. The most exotic places, where people participated our race, were for example Argentina, New Zealand, Australia, United States,” adds Kelk.
The four main distances of the virtual run brought 3019 runners and walkers to the track. In addition, 945 children took part in the children's races.
“For me it was a fascinating event! I am not a runner to be honest, but I still wanted to try something new, especially after 2 months of complete lockdown, when we were not even allowed to go out for a run in Italy. It was different, not having the crowd around you, but very enjoyable. I was alone with nature, running at my pace, with no external pressure. But - I still felt as part of something bigger! I was running the 5 km distance, as many other people in Estonia and in several different places,” says Anna Crosignani, who completed her race in Northern Italy.
“It was a really nice event, where you could set your own pace and choose the right day and weather for you. In addition, this time it was a good opportunity to support the youngest member of the family, who started the 10 km track for the first time,” says Janek Vana, who completed the virtual run with his family. “If I had to choose, I would still prefer a common popular sports event, because then I can also enjoy the company and support of the fellow athletes,” he adds.
The virtual run of Tartu Forest Marathon also opened this year's Tartu Marathon Cube season. The second stage of the series is a virtual cycling race of Tartu Rattaralli, which will take place from May 29th to June 14th. However, the organisers hope to hold the autumn events - Tartu Inline Skating Marathon, Tartu MTB Marathon and Tartu City Marathon - according to the regular event program.