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Junior Marathon 2014

  • Apr 8 - Apr 29, 2014

About the Junior Marathon

The Junior Marathon is a relay running race for 10-member teams, made up of high school students who take on the entire classic marathon course.

Each year the project is sponsored by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, the Ministry of Health, the European Commission Representation in the Czech Republic, the Czech Olympic Committee, the Czech Athletics Federation, as well as governors and mayors of the cities involved. In terms of length, the marathon course ranks as one of the toughest running disciplines out there – which is why it has been adapted in the case of the Junior Marathon. The entire stretch of approx. 42 km (according to the local conditions) is divided into ten parts and completed as a relay.

The purpose of the Junior Marathon is to raise the profile of marathon running to young people aged 14 to 19 years. In getting students hooked on sport, we hope to contribute to combating the problems currently affecting young people such as alcohol, cigarettes, drug abuse, plus to draw them away from sedentary activities such as sitting at a computer hours at a time.

The whole competition revolves around sport - over the course of the sixteen years of its existence, the event has grown in popularity especially among students themselves. High school students are given the unique chance to take part in the Volkswagen Prague Marathon - a race which is getting more and more attention year on year not just by the Czech public but from people all over the world. The race is also filmed by television cameras.

Last but by no means not least, the PIM team behind the project aspires to offer a helping hand in developing first-class runners who, one day, may be able to represent the Czech Republic internationally on a variety of courses including that of the marathon.

Sporting aspects

  • A shared experience from a highly individual sport – this is what you can expect from the Marathon race course
  • Due to the long distance involved, team positioning is not of importance during the race as the ranking order constantly changes to reflect the performances of individual participants – the team has to work together flawlessly throughout the whole race.
  • Need to put together an appropriate team strategy making the most of each runner’s skills
  • For a great many students in this day and age, running 4 km is an achievement in itself

The Junior Marathon project stands out as a unique event which you will not find anywhere else in Europe. Marketing research carried out in 2007 demonstrated that 15% of respondents in the Czech Republic knew of, or at least had an idea about the event. This figure attests to the high quality of publicity surrounding the event as well as the level of interest in taking part in both the capital city and the regions.

How is the Junior Marathon organised?

The entire competition is organised in three phases – the school round, semi-final round and final race.

Semi-final race

There will be fourteen semi-final races in total – according to regional splits.

Kraj Vysočina - Jihlava - 7 April

Jihomoravský kraj - Brno - 8 April

Zlínský kraj - Zlín - 9 April

Olomoucký kraj - Olomouc - 10 April

Moravskoslezký kraj - Ostrava - 11 April

Jihočeský kraj - České Budějovice - 14 April

Ústecký kraj - Ústí nad Labem - 15 April

Plzeňský kraj - Plzeň - 16 April

Pardubický kraj - Pardubice - 22 April

Královehradecký kraj - Pardubice - 22 April

Karlovarský kraj - Karlovy Vary - 24 April

Liberecký kraj - Jilemnice - 28 April

Hl. m. Praha - Praha - 29 April

Středočeský kraj - Praha - 30 April

Development of school participation in the semi-final rounds:

  • 1997 - 5 schools
  • 1998 - 35 schools
  • 1999 - 55 schools
  • 2000 - 85 schools
  • 2001 - 92 schools
  • 2002 - 102 schools
  • 2003 - 138 schools
  • 2004 - 148 schools
  • 2005 - 144 schools
  • 2006 - 135 schools
  • 2007 - 152 schools
  • 2008 - 108 schools
  • 2009 - 112 schools
  • 2010 - 131 schools
  • 2011 - 133 schools
  • 2012 - 150 schools
  • 2013 - 188 schools

Organisation of the JMC semi-finals

Since 1998 already, the semi-finals have been organised by PIM in conjunction with university students on sport and management study programmes. This year will be organised by students from the Faculty of Physical Education and Sport at Charles University.

Choice and location of the course

Aside from bringing the semi-final conditions closer to the conditions of the classic marathon, the race is also becoming ever more attractive for runners and spectators alike. The courses for the semi-finals are located in the city centres and parks of big cities.



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