Details about the first Comtrade Serbia Marathon revealed: Here's why it will be unique!
Each competitor will receive a certificate, regardless of whether they run the 5-kilometer race or the full marathon - and the finish line for all races will be in the Stark Arena
The Athletics Federation of Serbia (ASS) held a press conference on the occasion of the signing of a sponsorship deal with Comtrade, who will be the general sponsor of the Serbia Marathon, to be held on November 17.
The official name of this competition will be the Comtrade Serbia Marathon, while the finish line for the 5, 21 and 42 kilomter races will be in the Stark Arena - so all competitors will be able to feel the true sporting spirit and go through the finish line in the same Arena where Novak Djokovic, Ivana Spanovic and many other great Serbian athletes have competed.
Predrag Momirovic, the marathon's technical director, said that the organization of the Comtrade Serbia Marathon is at the highest level, done in cooperation with the City of Belgrade and the police.
"The Athletics Federation of Serbia is organizing this event with the City of Belgrade, in order to hold it at the highest level with the city's public utility companies, and we are working with the Ministry of Interior and the traffic police to make the safety of competitors, as well as those who will not be running, as good as possible."
"As for the race itself, we have three races, the marathon, the half marathon and the 5-kilometer race. The start is from the direction of the Zorana Djindjica Boulevard on the north side of the Stark Arena. The marathon and the half marathon races will start at 10 am, while the 5-km race will start 15 minutes later."
"All races are certified, we will get accurate results for all participants. The route consists of one lap in New Belgrade, 21 kilometers long, so half marathon participants will run one lap, and those running the marathon two. The route also includes the new Ada bridge, while the finish line of the races is in the Arena. The limit for the 5 km race is 45 minutes, which means that all participants could also walk. For the half marathon and the marathon, the race limit is 6 hours. The event ends at 4 pm. Next week, we will announce the exact times when all streets (on the route) will shut down and the changes to the public transportation so that citizens are informed on the day," said Momirovic.
One of Serbia's top long distance runners and mountain running champion, Nevena Jovanovic, will run the half marathon at the Serbia Marathon, and is expected to reach the podium.
"I want to thank the Athletics Federation of Serbia, because I speak on behalf of the athletes. It is an honor and a pleasure to be a participant in the first Serbia Marathon, and I expect to be in the top three and stand on the podium."
She also spoke about the race she ran in China during the 7th International Army Games, and noted that she plans to break her personal record in the half marathon on November 17 in Belgrade.
"As for that race, it was the 7th International Army Games held in Wuhan. The race was very difficult, there is high humidity in China which doesn't benefit the runners. The track was also difficult and undulating, especially at 21 and 22 kilometer marks. I plan to break my personal record in the half marathon, the track suit me, we will see what the conditions will be like," said Nevena Jovanovic.
Slobodan Popovic, director of Serbia Marathon, thanked Comtrade for the financial support.
"Each event, in order to be well organized, must be well funded. Comtrade has been in the field of athletics for the last 10 years, and this time as well it has recognized the importance of this event. I would like to thank Comtrade, who will also have the name for this event, as it will be called Comtrade Serbia Marathon."
"I would also like to point out that on November 16, Hotel M will host a seminar on street racing where we will have the opportunity to hear from race organizers from surrounding countries, who are directors of far more experienced marathons."
He also stressed that on the day of Serbia Marathon there will be many non-competitive races, as well as the final of the "With Speed to the Stars" campaign.
"On the very day of the race, those in the Arena will be able to attend the final of the campaign which is, with the help of the ASS general sponsor Telenor, conducted by our team - the campaign "With Speed to the Stars", which will be attended by about 500 boys and girls. We will also have the journalists' race, the race of our town, Novi Pazar, which is carrying out the campaign, as well as the race of children without parental care. I invite all Belgraders to come to the Arena on November 17 because there will be something to see there."
"We wanted to offer something that is not typical of all other marathons. The offer is extremely strong because the racing movement is extremely developed. All races are certified, we treat everyone equally, from those running 5 kilometers to those running the full marathon. Everyone will be timed and each competitor who passes the finish line will receive a medal. The other element that sets this marathon apart is that the finish line is indoors, so that all runners can experience the ambience experienced by our greatest athletes," said Popovic.
Comtrade's marketing director, Ljubomir Ristic, said that Comtrade's relationship with sports is very strong.
"As for the event, the link between Comtrade and sports is very long and solid. Our president has been an active sportsman and a successful athlete; we have sports in our blood and in our DNA, it is inextricably linked with the values of our company. We have a running track inside the company, sports fields, a gym that employees use on a daily basis, coaches who prepare them... Over 30 of our employees will take part in the marathon, which makes us proud, and therefore this support is logical and we are pleased to provide it," said Ristic.
This event will also have a humanitarian character. The representative of the Association of Pulmonary Hypertension of Serbia, Mirko Glavinic, thanked everyone for inviting the organization to be a part of such a significant event in order to raise awareness of pulmonary hypertension.
"I would like to thank the organizers for inviting us to be a part of such a great event. Pulmonary hypertension is a serious illness and, unfortunately, a deadly one, it affects young people between the ages of 20 and 40 and without adequate therapy, the patients' lifespan is less than two and a half years. Persons suffering from pulmonary hypertension constantly experience a heart rate as if they were running a marathon race, and while athletes can rest - they can't. I express my huge gratitude to everyone on behalf of those suffering from pulmonary hypertension for giving us the honor of being a part of this spectacle," said Glavinic.