Highlights from the Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon

The youngest RunCzech race offers another RunCzech Running League gem. Karlovy Vary is both an idyllic spa town and a mecca for film buffs.

And as if that weren’t enough, it’s also the backdrop to one of the most amazing half marathons in the world.  Not only does the 21 kilometre and 97.5 metre course fly by but it also refreshes the running spirit. All those coming for the Karlovy Vary experience will not find an ordinary race but a true running treasure!


Key information:

  • This is the fifth event year
  • The Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon will be broadcast live on ČT Sport and online on RunCzech.com. The broadcast starts at 17:40.
  • The Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon is the first of the RunCzech Running League regional races comprising seven races in five cities around the Czech Republic. Along with last year’s latest addition to the RunCzech family, the O2 Prague Relay 4x5, a total of 82 840 runners took part in RunCzech Running League races in 2016 – which is almost eight thousand more than in 2015
  • The race has been awarded the Gold Quality Label by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) for a second year running. The seven RunCzech Running League races boast a total of seven Gold Quality Labels, placing the Czech Republic at the helm of the world rankings of countries organising long-distance runs. No other country can pride itself on such a track record
  • The race kicks off at 17.30 from nábřeží Osvobození with the dm Family Run starting from the same place at 16.00
  • The race capacity remains unchanged from last year, amounting to 4 000 competing runners. An additional five hundred runners will join the dm family run with a capacity of 2 500 athletes including little ones and grown-ups
  • The half marathon takes runners through the most beautiful parts of the spa town. Long-distance runners will start from nábřeží Osvobození and run around the famous promenade halls, the Church of St Mary Magdalene, the Grandhotel Pupp and the race course
  • The start of the Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon will be given by the Karlovy Vary Deputy Mayor Čestmír Bruštík, the dm Family Run by the governor of the Karlovy Vary region Jana Vildumetzová
  • 2016 proved to be an especially successful year in terms of results with two new records – the best women’s time from current world record holder in the half marathon Joyciline Jepkosgei and  a Czech one from Milan Kocourek.
  • A number of African runners will have their sights set on smashing records this year. The race favourites include the Kenyans Shadrack Kimining and Mark Korir, Moroccan Moussab Hadout and Eritrean runner Dawit Weldesilasie
  • The women’s start line promises to deliver a gripping battle between Kenya and Ethiopia involving the two race favourites Mercy Kibarus and Sutume Asefa, coming from these two countries
  • Following on from his personal best performance and best Czech half marathon time in the past twenty years, Jiří Homoláč is the clear favourite to win among the Czechs
  • Two veterans are expected to engage in a battle for the top podium spot among the women – involving Petra Kamínková and the almost local Ivana Sekyrová
  • Taking part as a pacemaker in the Johnson & Johnson Women's Challenge will be Dalibor Gondík along with Skyline singer and fitness trainer Jacob Bína. The presenter Leoš Mareš will be taking part in the 2Run this year
  • The Mayor of Karlovy Vary Petr Kulhánek will be appearing in the role of official pacemaker, leading runners at a time of 1:50
  • Also forming part of the weekend schedule are the dm Family Run and Marathon Music Festival with bands and a DJ along the course. Mattoni will feature its own special tent along the colonnade of the Marathon Music Festival with singer-songwriter Jakub Ondra entertaining runners along the course
  • RunCzech collaborates with a total of fifty charitable organisations. Last year a total of 5 287 runners generated almost ten million Crowns for the Run for a Good Cause project. SOS Children’s Villages is the main charity partner for the Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon
  • The greatest number of foreign runners taking part come from Slovakia, Russia, Germany, Poland, the United States, France, Spain, Great Britain, Hungary and Ukraine
  • The top level of medical care offered along the course will see some new features this year.  Four mobile AED cycle patrols furnished with an automatic external defibrillator linking up to medical professionals will move in among the runners. 15  Aid stations will also be dotted around the course
  • Open to anyone at any time, the five-kilometre Mattoni FreeRun circuit in Karlovy Vary takes runners along the Ohře River.  Further circuits are currently being planned for Sokolov, Chodov and Cheb
  • Local runners are being prepared for the race under the guidance of Miroslav Zítka as part of the Rozběháme Vary!/ Getting Vary running! project
  • The official race hashtag is  #KVHalf


Interesting figures

  • The capacity for the Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon is 4 000 runners
  • Capacity for the dm Family Run is 2 500 participants
  • There will be 60 four-member relays (3 x 5 km + 1 x 6,0975 km)
  • There will be 210 2Run two-member relays  (1 x 10 km + 1 x 11,0975 km)
  • A total of 46 nationalities will appear at the start line
  • 66 % runners are men, 34 % women
  • The average age of women taking part in the half marathon is 36.8 years, the average age o men is 39.9 years
  • On average women complete the Mattoni Karlovy Vary Half Marathon in 2:06:11, men in 1:50:47
  • A total of seven men and six women runners will be celebrating their birthdays on race day
  • The most common names among the men taking part are Jan, Petr and Martin, while among the women it is Jana followed by Petra and Martina
  • The vast majority of long-distance runners are university educated (58 %), with an additional 34% having completed further education and the remaining 8 % with basic level education
  • The average runner needs to take 17 216 steps to complete the 21 0975 km course
  • The oldest male participant: Petr Prokeš (CZE), 72 years
  • The oldest female participant: Naděžda Lédlová (CZE), 68 years
  • A total of 660 volunteers will help out at the race
  • Almost fifteen thousand visitors from all over the world will visit the www.runczech.com site on race day (12 992 in 2016)
  • On race day more than 80 000 users (84 296 in 2016) will receive messages from RunCzech channels on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter)


Used during the race:

  • 378 traffic signs
  • 22 540 safety pins
  • 46 125 cups
  • 19 268 freshening up sponges
  • 4 054 thermal insulation sheets
  • 6 500 medals
  • 4 452 m of fencing
  • 112 portable toilets



  • 17 250 l litres of Mattoni
  • 5 675 litres of Gatorade (isotonic drink) 



  • 1 439 kg of bananas
  • 871 kg of oranges
  • 18 kg of salt
  • 24 kg of sugar



  • World record – men:                                      0:58:23 (2010) Zersenay Tadese (ERI), Lisbon
  • World record – women:                                1:04:52 (2017) Joyciline Jepkosgei (KEN), Prague
  • Czech record – men:                                      1:01:31 (1997), Jan Pešava
  • Czech record – women:                                                1:11:02 (1994), Alena Peterková
  • Race record – men:                                         1:01:01 (2015),Elijah Serem (KEN)
  • Race record– women:                                   1:09:07 (2016), Joyciline Jepkosgei (KEN)
  • Fastest Czech man:                                         1:06:51 (2016), Milan Kocourek
  • Fastest Czech woman:                                   1:17:57 (2014), Ivana Sekyrová

Extended menu

Title partners

  • adidas
  • Birell
  • Mattoni
  • O2
  • Sportisimo
  • Volkswagen

Official partners

  • dm
  • Unicredit bank
  • Gatorade
  • Hilton Hotels in Prague
  • Czech Airlines
  • Prague Airport
  • Hainan Airlines
  • České Dráhy

Official media partners

  • Radiožurnál
  • Deník
  • Hospodářské noviny
  • Forbes
  • Česká televize
  • Reportér
  • Seznam.cz

Media partners

  • Behej.com
  • Praha TV
  • Impact Digital Media
  • Newton Media
  • Railreklam
  • Český rozhlas Junior
  • Run magazine


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  • Eltodo
  • IDC-softwarehouse
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Komwag
  • letenkysnadno.cz
  • Messenger
  • Palestra
  • Tesco
  • Národní muzeum
  • Ski a Bike Centrum Radotín
  • Meggle
  • Pedigree
  • Výstaviště Praha
  • PRE


  • Praha
  • CzechTourism
  • ČAS
  • Evropská komise
  • AIMS
  • MSMT


  • Pražské Jaro
  • Praha 5
  • Praha 2
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  • Praha 7
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  • Prague City Tourism
  • Praha 1
  • FTVS
  • Karlova Univerzita