This slideshow requires JavaScript.


A tough week-end for the arrival of the teams to participate at the 19th SPAR European cross-country championship. The “Ferenc Liszt” airport of Budapest was closed yesterday around midday, due to a technical problem which occurred in the electric supply system. Minute-by-minute all channels were boiling, how to have the teams arrive safe and sound for the Sunday’s Spar European Cross-country competition!?!

Each and everyone in the  EAC and the LOC  had their share to handle this unexpected and superhuman tasks.

They all definitely deserve “an acknowledgment medal” for  their own multiplied marathon run …  racing in time to acheive all  participating members to arrive!

For the first time, the organizing committee was challenged to handle and learn the lesson which should be kept in mind as for the future in preparing, organizing the  forthcoming  SPAR European cross-country championship.

Never-the-less, still to come, being in the Olympic year another adrenaline game is to come tomorrow outside of Budapest at Szentendre, out and around the area of  the Skanzen,  the greatest open-air folk museum in Hungary.

Quotes from the Press conference:


Hansjörg Wirz,President of the International Organization did not arrive to Hungary.

P1280066 Therefore, the press conference was opened byKarel Pilny – EAC Vice President attended the press conference by giving an overview of  some  facts and figures: “At this hour I can say only the Georgians haven not arrived yet, but they are on the way. Even though there was a major problem with how and when will the participants  arrive to Hungary, but as far as they received the entries, we learnt team are to  arrive from 35 European member counties will take part to be challenged in this huge race, with overall: 539 final entries. The number of volunteers and sports experts, commentaries count up to the number of 1500 personals in service. Eleven broadcasting television channels as: Hungary – MTV, Belgium’ – VRT, Finland – YLE, Great Britain – BBC, Ireland – RTE, Italy – RAI, Netherlands –  NOS, Norway –  NRK, Portugal’ – RTP, Russia – RTR, Spain – TVE will be broadcasting live and delayed shots, updates on the run.”

P1280065Miklós Gyulai – LOC President,  Chairman of the Organizing Committee at the Hungarian Athletics Association said: “The many foreign participants flew to Vienna, Bratislava, and  Belgrade, from where buses came to Hungary. Hopefully we will see at the open-air museum of Skanzen the well-deserved champion athletes in the years to come at the SPAR  European Cross-Country competitions. approximately, one year ago we have started a new program, as  to open grounds, to involve children into the world of track and field grounds. Naturally, it will come with training the trainers as well.”  He mentioned that this year was a grand year for the Hungarian athletics. “Not only we are proud of Krisztián Pars, winning the gold medal at the London Olympic Games 2012, but in addition to reach adult successes, we stepped forward after the supplementation level.  Also hope the European Championship will bring success a another cream on top of the cake getting close to the  end of this year!Mr. Gyulai, wished all the competitors the best of luck may the best win!”

P1280057István Simicskó – EMMI Secretary of State for sport, said “The Hungarian government perceived and embraced  this awesome event  and supported it by 40 million (HUF). We saw the importance of athletic training and the European Cross Country competition. Within this amount there will be 1000 teachers, trainers receiving pre-educations, to managed in primary schools  starting competition. up programs for kids.. Also important to have professionally educated trainers in the field and track division who will give a chance for  the children of to-day to be the future athletic champions of tomorrow.”

P1280062 Miklós Cseri – LOC co-president, Director General at  the Skanzen’s Open-Air Ethnography Museum at Szentendre. „I beleive for the country cross competition this is  a significant area. Nowhere else in Europe  was arranged a cross-country championship on a site like this at the Skanzen a cross-country championship. Whereas, the  Course will take place running in the past of Hungary’s  18 and 19 century buildings, hilly and lower grounds, barns, windmills, shadoof,  farming in the past with its unique Hungarian scene,  and in the meantime getting a flavor our  history. So when I was asked why at the Skanzen wish  bring  the SPAR European cross-country championship. My answer was very simple: “I would like to have Paula Radcliffe running her special set  between and around the Open-Air Museum. So it seem to have  been a good enough reason and even was included in the promo material.” Yes, it will be a rememberable event for the locals and foreigner audience to root for the best-of-the-bests.”  Just wish to mention,  seeing a picture of Hungary’s history through and by the run-around, passing the folk houses and farming scene is to be as showing a window of our homeland.

Mr. Christian Mitz – EAC Director General …  First words cheered everyone in the press hall by admitting Out in the countryside  at the Skanzen the grounds and weather is creepy, but  „No matter of any weather conditions … A mark of a good sailor is to be/stay in the boat!”   … For the summer competitions  preparing in the winter snowy field could be good, but  in the winter the snowy field, experiencing it at to-day’s weather would perhaps rather be better to called to hold the cross-country skiing. Continued by saying: “Knowing, the top athletics are coming from Africa,  but keeping that in mind the SPAR European cross-country championship is all about Europe.”

Mr Christian Milz, the European Athletics Association (EAA), General Director:  Expressed his thanks to the whole LOC  administration of handling this major unexpected technical problem which showed up at the Budapest’s Airport.  Reflecting on the weather conditions  his words cheered everyone in the press hall by admitting: “Out in the countryside  at the Skanzen the grounds and weather is creepy, but  „No matter of any weather conditions … A mark of a good sailor is to be/stay in the boat!”  For the summer competitions  preparing in the winter snowy field could be a terrific experience, but at the same time, in the winter on the snowy, slippy field, experiencing it the way as it  is, perhaps would rather better to be called as  the cross-country skiing.” Continued by saying: “Knowing, the top athletics are from Africa,  but keeping that in mind the SPAR European cross-country championship is here and all about the grand athletics of Europe!”

Then came a short break and during  that time the media representatives  had a chance to speak with the competitors.


…Gold medallist  of 1500m,  at Helsinki 2012 – Henrik Ingebrigtsen (NOR) “Last year I was taken away from running caused by an injury.  So far, I consider the track and field competitions of the season went well. Previously coming to Hungary I worked hard to be in my best shape and hopefully I will be able to show it tomorrow out on the Skanzen’s fields.”


Finnuala Britton, Ireland defending champion of the women’s competition, told us she was already out to see the grounds at the  Szentendre’s : “I believe the hilly course will be a major challenge for the start-ups but  also everyone can count on seeing tomorrow an awesome, spectacular race.

P1280116…Junior women’s SPAR European cross-country champion – Emelia Gorecka (UK) “I really would like to defend my previous junior women’s cross-country title and naturally be the winner this time again! Seen the venue and I think it is a superb area to be a shot out on the run.  Same goes for me as “The Beatles” sang  !!!I feel fine!!!  and going to bring the best out of me!  I know out there the eyes will be sharply watching me and awaiting to defend my championship title. I am also aware there will be a couple of bursting in racers. Keeping that in mind, watching out for all unexpected situations.”

P1280112Sándor Szabó (HUN) “I know the Skanzen’s ground will not be an easy track to run, but I will be not on my own. All the competitors will row in the same boat. Same goes for me, I  and everyone else in this competition have to also fight against the weather conditions … the snow, maybe some spots of frozen tracks, harsh winds and not to talk about  the “hottest”  temperature being -3C. Anyway, I wish to run as fast as I can and will see where the road leads me to.”


Mentioning two Hungarian’s to keep an eye on: Barnabás Bene, the adult male and  Sándor Szabó in the U23 field may finish the lineup within the first ten runners. Both fulfilled their ground running tests.They are strong!

Thanks to the local arrangement the number of competing teams are rather higher than normally competing abroad. Therefore, beside already known Europe’s fine runners, expect to be seeing a great line up of Hungarian cross-country runners on Sunday at the SPAR  Cross Country European Championship, where else than out on the fields of the Skanzen, just approximately 20minutes drive from Budapest, passing  Szentendre thenafter, reaching the Skanzen’s Open-Air Museum and your there to see where the action starts!

Don’t miss it,  be out at the Skanzen tomorrow … or .. if you cannot make it, then  see how all the competitors will try to prove their best  through the television channels from 10 a.m. till 3 p.m. or get to see the latest  headlines on the European Athletics website

Update and snaps by Aggie Reiter

3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Chris on 11/12/2012 at 09:08

    Wow, this will be some tournament….massive coverage tells me from a far away place this must create major interest among the competing countries….I must ask a question and excuse my lack of knowledge but the name Sandor Szabo rings a loud bell to me, I recall back in the fifties as a child there was a world famous Hungarian wrestler by the same name….Is he similarly remembered in his home country as one of the icon’s of that sport…..Thanks again for your contributions ……Chris…..Australia

  2. Somebody essentially lend a hand to make severely posts I’d state. That is the very first time I frequented your website page and to this point? I amazed with the analysis you made to make this particular post incredible. Great activity!

    • Dear Jones Sabo … thank-you for your compliment … glad you enjoyed the updates … I am happy to inform the English speaking folks, whether they are staying in Budapest or reading the articles from abroad … cheers …. wishing you a great week-end … rollinginbudapest ,-)

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: