Association of International Marathons and Distance Races

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Race previews Pushkin – St Petersburg

10 April 2022, 2pm

A sporting tradition

Pushkin – St Petersburg
Sun 4 September 2022


This year the 95th Pushkin – St Petersburg Marathon will take place in St Petersburg, Russia.

The race was first held on 14 October 1923. Participants ran 32km from Tyarlevo (now Pushkin) – the birthplace of Russian athletics – and finished on Nevsky Prospekt. It is one of the oldest races in Europe. The race distance and the location of the start and finish have been adjusted over the years but the race itself was held every year on all but five occasions: during Second World War and the Siege of Leningrad between 1941–43, at the time of the “Leningrad affair” in 1949, and because of the Covid pandemic in 2020.

Twenty runners took part in the first race back in 1923 and they were greeted by a crowd of 20,000 spectators at the finish line. The number of participants increased year upon year. In 1925, there were 87 runners. The most massive run took place on 27 September 1986. On this day the race was held as part of the World Peace Relay, which had started in New York a week and a half before. From across the Atlantic Ocean a “peace” flame was delivered to Leningrad (at that time the city was still called that) by aeroplane. 30,000 runners took part in the event.

Since 1988 the event record has been held by Leonid Tikhonov, a masterful runner of international class, who ran a time of 1:29:55 for 30km. His.record has stood for 34 years.

In 2021 a commercial company organised the race for the first time – PushkinRun. More than 5000 people took part on an internationally-certified course.

A range of distances are offered: 42.2km, 30km, 10km and 5km. The start is in the ‘palace’ suburb of St Petersburg – the city of Pushkin, and the finish is on Palace Square, in the very centre of St Petersburg.

Each participant traditionally receives a mileage badge and a medal.

Dmitry Pavlov, the organiser of the PushkinRun series of races, is particularly interested in preserving the sports traditions of St Petersburg. Dmitry himself has run all six ‘Marathon majors’ and aims to organise competitions at the same level of the top international races in the world.

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