Tartu Maraton’s Open Track race and the 5th Tartu Relay Marathon will most likely take place in Haanja
Tartu Maraton’s 44th Open Track race and the 5th Tartu Relay Marathon are just a week and a half away. The races will most likely be held at Haanja Ski Resort.
The circumstances of the Tartu Maraton’s original course are the same: the course is covered with a thin layer of ice and a couple of centimeters of snow, which makes skiing not possible. Although at first, the Open Track race’s and the Relay Marathon’s back-up plan was Mammaste, the plan has now changed to Haanja. The reason is simple: in Mammaste there is only 2,5 kilometers of available skiing course at the moment, but in Haanja races could be held at a longer course.
"The only reason why we decided to prefer Haanja to Mammaste is the fact that the ski course is longer there, which means that the races will be more exciting," says Race Director Indrek Kelk. He added that Mammaste is still an option if the weather should get worse, because Haanja’s course is mainly based on natural snow, but Mammaste’s course is fully covered with artificial snow.
If the races are held on Haanja’s 10 kilometer course, then the race distances will be shorter than originally planned. The Open Track distances 63, 31 and 16 km would be replaced with 40, 20 and 10 km accordingly and the Relay Marathon would hold a competition of 4x10 km.
But when will the organizers make the final decisions concerning the Open Track race and the 5th Tartu Relay Marathon? "I would like to be an optimist and say that we can make the final decision about the races on Monday, 13th of February, but so much depends on the weather forecast. In the worst-case scenario we will make the final decisions on Wednesday, 15th of February – then we should have an accurate weather forecast about the race day," says Kelk. "Then we’ll see – maybe a miracle will occur and we can organize the races on the original course. But most likely the Open Track race and the Relay Marathon will be held at Haanja, "adds Kelk.
More details are available on the event website.