On March 3 in the suburbs of Rybinsk there took place the XI traditional international Rostec Demino FIS /Worldloppet Ski Marathon 2018. The first sports day was marked by the start and bright finish of a gold 50 km race.
The starting line of the marathon which ranks the eighth among the best world marathons and for the first time ever has become part of the FIS Worldloppet Ski Marathon Cup this year, were toed by around two thousand competitors. The high-status races gathered athletes and skiing amateurs from 20 countries of the world and 60 regions of Russia, including the Olympic champions Alexander Legkov, Nikita Kriukov and Evgenii Dementiev and 76 Worldloppet masters. Worldloppet masters are athletes who have taken part in at least ten marathon races of the Worldloppet series on two continents.
“Russia has always had a lot of talented skiers. And at the recently completed Winter Olympic Games in Korea, despite the difficulties purposely caused to our athletes, the Russians won eight medals in skiing and were second, in terms of the number of medals in this sport, only to the Norwegian team. It proves that we have good reserves. I am sure all the marathon competitors and fans will feel comfortable and get only pleasant impressions of this sports feast!”- said Dmitry Mironov, Governor of the Yaroslavl Region, during the opening ceremony.
Epp Paal, Worldloppet CEO, greeted the participants of the marathon race: “Demino is our long-standing partner. I wish all the competitors good luck and good starts”.
The Olympic champions Alexander Legkov, Evgenii Dementiev and the participant of the Olympiad in PyeongChang Andrei Melnichenko were among the first to start. They were the ones who had a real fight at the track and finish.
In the end the first place goes to Andrei Melnichenko. He covered the 50-kilometer distance in 2 hours 00 minutes 53 seconds.
“I wanted to be quick at starting the race for the others not to be sitting behind but the guys were also working hard throughout the lap and were following me. I made an effort, managed to drag the guys, they dragged me and we sorted things out at the finish line”, - shared the athlete right after the finish.
Nikolai Khokhriakov and the current record-holder of the Demino Marathon, Olympic champion Evgenii Dementiev finished by the minimum margin versus the leader.
The finish density was high not only in the men’s race. Svetlana Nikolaeva, a trainee of the Rybinsk sports school, finished first in the female race of the Demino marathon. Her lead over Olga Rocheva was defined by photofinish only.
“My task was to keep up with them till the last finish kilometer. And then I used my sprinting abilities. We were fighting with Olga to the end. I wanted to win here, at home, in Rybinsk a lot,” – said Svetlana Nikolaeva.
The third was Ekaterina Iadovina, a debutant of the Demino Ski Marathon.
While the marathon racers were hitting the track, a big entertainment program was offered to the guests and fans of the sports feast in the territory of Demino. The teams of ten municipal settlements of the Yaroslavl Region were competing in the gastronomic contest “Rybinsk ZavarUkha” [the Russian word “zavarukha” means “stir” and the word “ukha” can be translated as soup). All interested were treated to lean Volga-style cabbage soup. A big animation program, life-size puppets, performance of the town’s and region’s creative teams – everybody was having fun while waiting for the victorious finish and an awarding ceremony.
The leaders of the marathon race got on the victory podium together with the winners of the Demino Marathon Cup. These are super-athletes who have scored the maximum number of points in three Demino marathons – skiing, running and cycling marathons. This year the cup holders are Iuliia Surikova and Aleksei Bizenkov.
Awards were handed over to the winners by Dmitry Mironov, Governor of the Yaroslavl Region; Epp Paal, Worldloppet CEO; Denis Dobriakov, Mayor of Rybinsk; Tatiana Smirnova, Head of the Rybinsk Municipal Area; Nikolai Zimiatov, a four-time Olympic champion, and Alexander Zavialov, a three-time Olympic medalist, a world champion, a two-time World Cup holder.
On March 4 the Demino marathon awaits participants of a silver 25-kilometer CT race, juniors starting on a distance of 5 and 10 km and the youngest competitors of a baby marathon.
Program of races on March 4
10:00 – “Baby-marathon”, 1 km, CT. Mass-start.
10:20 – 5 km race, CT – athletes born in 2004 – 2006. Mass-start.
10:40 – 10 km race, CT – male athletes born in 2002 – 2003, female athletes born in 2000 – 2003. Mass-start.
11:00 – WORLDLOPPET 25 km race, CT – athletes of junior, main groups, middle and senior age. Mass-start.
14:30 – awarding ceremony, drawing of prizes from partners