The Ukrainian capital of Kyiv is a city of parks and magnificent architecture and monuments and these landmarks are showed off to thousands of runners from nearby and abroad each year in the Nova Poshta Kyiv Half Marathon.
The event is still relatively new with the first edition dating back as recently as 2010 when only a few hundred aficionados took part but fast forward eight years and nearly 9000 athletes from across the globe will be taking part in this year’s event. Nearly 3500 runners have registered for the half marathon which is a record in itself.
This year’s event takes place on 22 April and the race, which is growing rapidly in both size and reputation, has been rewarded with a five-star certification from European Athletics Running for All which guarantees participants the highest level of organisational and safety standards. The race has also been promoted in status to an IAAF Bronze Label Road Race and these accolades are a recognition of the hard work the organisers have put in to bring the race up to international standards.
“This meant a lot to us, because the Kyiv Half Marathon was recognised as the event of the highest level of organisation. We have provided a platform for elite athletes to compete and enhanced the quality of the event,” said the Sports Director of Running League Ukraine Iryna Lishchynska, who won a bronze medal in the 1500m at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
“Running in the city centre, fantastic routes, participants from around the world, elite athletes, representatives of international federations, spectators: this is the Kyiv Half Marathon. Perhaps this is not rocket science but in terms of the organisation, every detail is important,” added Lishchynska.
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The event is a good event for newcomers to running with shorter events on the programme, such as the popular 5km. There are also relay and corporate events which allow runners to join forces with friends and workmates. The route itself starts and finishes in the historic city centre which makes it a good course for spectators, as well as the runners who benefit immeasurably from the crowd support.
“People appreciate what we do, they are happy with the race. Of course, we have what to strive for, but most importantly we bring people together,” said Lishchynska. “When an athlete has support on the route, their wings grow. It is thee adrenaline, excitement and additional motivation to run better and faster. Athletes always feel it. The atmosphere is always unforgettable.”
Entries for this year’s race on 22 April are still open through the race website http://kyivhalfmarathon.org/.
The European Athletics Quality Road Race standards act as an assurance for road runners throughout Europe. They distinguish between races that respect the standards and those that haven’t sought certification or assessment. They form the foundation of Running for All, a strong recognisable brand for running activities throughout Europe.
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