In Search of Ukrainian Europe - "Memory Run of Chernobyl Heroes" "Slavutich""
He first drew attention to the half marathon in the city of Slavutych when he got acquainted with half marathons held in Ukraine. This is one of the oldest Ukrainian cross-country events - it was held for the 30th time in 2019. Slavutich half marathon is dedicated to employees of nuclear power plants. It is one of three energy half marathons of Ukraine together with Netishyn half marathon and half marathon "Running under the cooling towers".
During the half marathon the championship between the teams of NPP workers takes place. But my attention was drawn to the following: participants in the marathon pay tribute to the liquidators of the Chornobyl tragedy, which has become quite connected to the history of my country. Agree, it is better to take part in the tribute and pay tribute to the memory of the people who sacrificed for the welfare of others than drinking a bottle of beer in the park. But this is a bit of a lyrical digression.
Registration was done on vseprobegi.org, where you could pay your entry fee. The main news of the run, the organizers covered on their page on Facebook.
The main problem I faced was how to get there and where to stay overnight. Honestly, before I came here, I knew almost nothing about the city. I have only ever heard that it is a small town near the Belarusian border. It was possible to get there from Kiev by electric train in about 3 hours, as I did. Oddly enough, the electric train turned out to be quite good. Along the way, I met an old acquaintance of V. Myshchinkov, so, as you might have guessed, the time flew by unnoticed by different conversations.
Housing issues were solved by the organizers, giving everyone a contact where they could stay. I gladly used their help and booked myself a place in the Olympic Sports Complex.
Arriving at our destination, we immediately went there. I was fortunate to meet many interesting people, most of whom impressed me with Anvik Zgursky (pictured far right), known as the legend of cross-country and cross-country skiing in Ukraine. At the age of 87, he continues to lead an active lifestyle and work in the shop of the Browery Powder Metallurgy Plant.
The start of the half marathon was scheduled for 11 o'clock, so waking up the next morning we went for the starter packs. Having taken them from us, we have enough time to enjoy the beauty of this town.
Half an hour before the start, a small press conference was scheduled, with the organizers of the run and the mayor.
The race start was massive for all distances: 5 km, 10 km and 21 km. There were few participants: 280 runners in all distances. The run was quite comfortable. The route consisted of one circle with pretty good views: the first few kilometers the route passed through the town, and then gradually passed into the forest, which alternated with the surrounding villages and fields. You would have to run 10.5 km one way, then turn and 10.5 km back. Hydration stations are located at a distance of 5 km, 10 km and 15 km. This time Vasily Mishchenko made the company during the run.
I didn't set any goals for this half marathon - I just wanted to run it and get a good impression, but since I had a personal pacemaker I ran with, it turned out a little differently. And he was very pleased.
The first 10 km were wonderful: Vasily and I kept the pace well. The first half of the race managed to cope fairly quickly - 46:13 to be exact. Then Vasyl left me and tried to improve my previous result on this track, and I continued on my way to the finish line.
didn't expect anything special from this half marathon. It was supposed to be a regular half marathon where there is a start and finish by default, and the main draw is what time I get to finish. But he, I tell you, was good - 1:39:14.
Although it was not a small disappointment: 1.5 or 1 km before the finish I learned that the route is a little shorter than planned.
After the finish, the participants were waiting for a pasta party at a local restaurant, at the end of which there was a rewarding of participants and a short walk through the history of the event from the organizers. Then the road to Kiev through Chernihiv was waiting for me.
The city itself is very clean and tidy, homogeneous architecture of the late Soviet period. But for me, it adds to Slavutich its charm. It seems as if you were in Europe, only a Soviet model. The run in Slavutych was followed by the spiritual birth and the feeling of atmosphere that prevailed during the run. A comfortable route may not force nature, but on the contrary, it improves its conditions. Even a small drawback with the length of the track failed to ruin them. As for the track, this issue I would address to the Athletics Federation, which has not yet certified the track for 30 years, as is done in countries where officials are performing their duties.