ISC Praha - Speed Skating Team

Spice Rollerblade Marathon (4.8.2013, Jurmala, Latvia)

 REPORT  gb.gif (ac) Choice of flights from Bari to European destinations is not as wide and cheap and as it could be from Rome or Milan, so I usually take the opportunity to run a marathon and combine some sightseeing and a short vacation into the same trip. That was the case with the Spice Rollerbalde Marathon held last Sunday in Latvian sea resort Jurmala.

 After a few days spent for assorted sightseeing in Riga, Sunday morning I moved (again) to Jurmala for running the short race (14 km).  I had previously been in Jurmala on Friday for lesson No. 1:  "How to use Latvian railways" and focus the path from the train station to the marathon start, apart from the obvious sightseeing, so the 2nd time it went quite straightforward, and I was on place for registration well before the required time.

After the full marathon and the children race, the 14Km was the last race on schedule at 13.00, so there was plenty of time to put on skates, leave the belongings at the deposit facilities and even enjoy a mid-morning siesta cozily sitting on a park bench before going for a warming up run.
The shorter distance is quite popular for fitness skaters, and since the starting order is determined based on the assigned number, being me No. 1290 at the starting line I was presented a messy wall of other two sections in front of me. Nedless to say, the start was a real fighting, sort of new rugby skating discipline, and I was near to fall down twice after unprofessional skaters kicked my skates while pushing too wide on their side. Luckily just after a couple of turns, climbing up a bridge was the perfect occasion to make a clean sweep of the slow mass, so finally some real race began!
In fact, especially the 1st section was not the easiest track for speed skating, uneven surface with very grainy asphalt, scattered holes and badly made repairs made a perfect combination for unpleasant ankle pain. 

DANCING BEAR. An unusual but original competition called "Dancing bear" (in original"Deju lācis") prepared local organizers for all skaters. Anybody with a valid starting number could participate but there could have been only one winner. We are very proud to announce that the twelve member jury unanymously voted the ultimate winner of the dancing competition is Antonio Cristiani from Winjay ISC Praha team! Congratulations!

Since I did not explored the track the day before the race (despite this was my initial intention), along the race I kept questioning about the many spots marked on the map as "crossing". But the mystery was soon unveiled: these were pedestrian crossing made as bumps to slow down cars, too bad that for skating, they would find an excellent place as ramps inside a skate park, comparing to a speed skating track!

Anyway, especially after getting the on-the-fly refreshment and passing the last turn, the surface appeared much better, allowing me to finally get a good push, speed up, and most importantly, skate with evident pleasure and determination. I felt so excited that in the final 3-4 Km section my race turned in a sort of “Pista! Overtake everybody!” until near the finish lane I couldn’t see any survivor ahead. Apparently, the final rush was so great that as soon as other skaters left behind crossed the finish lane, they all congratulated with me and didn't let me go until we got a picture together. I got somehow confused and thought to myself, what's happening did I win the race ?! But a quick look to my Garmin sent me back to earth, 39 minutes was definitively too much time for just 14 Km, so well Sirs, it has been a pleasure to run my wheels in Latvia, the podium might be for my next life! 

MARATHON. Skaters from Estonian team Uus Maa/Rullibaas dominated the main race of the day Spice Rollerblade Marathon (42 km). It may not be such a big surprise that the winner of the race Alfredo Leon Moreno from Venezuela won the World Inline Cup in Ostrava in 2012.

The overall organization was quite good, colorful stage with pretty Latvian dancers and DJ set, at least compared to the typical popular race held in the Germany countryside. Too bad that despite international participation, the speaker announced only in Latvian (sometimes with a summary in Russian for which I still luckily recall some sparse words here and there). Too bad of course for the bad surface and for the mess at the start line, on which the organizers might have better reserved the section ahead to team members keeping the “just for fun” people behind for quite some good reasons, security included.

Pictures from the race or from the start ? As always happens to every race, the tons of photographers simply faded away without any hope to get in touch for getting a “souvenir”. Too bad the no technology is currently available to pack an inflatable Chinese guy into the baggage for personal picture service!

It has been my 1st race where no deposit fee nor other guarantee for the chip was required, but a simple and effective recover procedure had been designed just after the finish line: where initially there was the left turn just after the start, which could have been good to slow down and recover, the road was unexpectedly closed down and girls not as pretty as the dancers abruptly yelled you to “stop !“ and asked for the "cipi". I love spectacular T-stops, but I would have preferred not to scratch my MPC team-wheels for such a Latvian style insanity. Sunny and quite hot weather, temperature around 28 degrees, I will try my rainwheels next time, sorry.

Race website:


Antonio Cristiani






Přidat komentář

Přehled komentářů

Zatím nebyl vložen žádný komentář