The season of skyrunning opened in the mountains of Kopetdag

The season of skyrunning opened in the mountains of Kopetdag

Oleg Vinokurov

“Dushak skyrace 2018” has opened the next season of skyrunning in Turkmenistan. This young sport, whose name in English means “running at height”, managed to find popularity in the country.

The Cup of Turkmenistan is being held for the fourth year, with which the best mountain runners from different provinces competing. Assistance in the organization of the current race was provided by the Archabil district etrap of the city of Ashgabat.

Skyrunning organically united people’s attraction to the beauty of the Turkmen mountains and sporting excitement. Those who participated in competitions in these years, had time to visit the most picturesque corners of the country – the mountain ranges of Kopetdag and the Great Balkhan.

The start of the race was given at the children’s health center “Yashlyk” in the town of Geokdere, and the finish was at the top of the Dushak-erekdag mountain, the third highest in Turkmenistan. The height difference on the track was almost 2 thousand meters, and its length is 12 thousand meters. According to these indicators, the route became known as one of the most difficult in the Cup. According to the classification of skyrunning, it goes in the category of “high altitude run”.

Competitions have gathered the strongest sportsmen of the country, including representatives of alpine clubs: Ashgabat – “Agama” and Balkanabat – “Mert”. A total of fifty Skyrunners took part in the race.

The participants were lucky with the weather and, even though on the previous sections of the run strong wind tried to blow the runners off the crest, this time they did not have to run knee-deep in the snow, like last year.

Among the men, the whole race was led by Yazgeldy Odeniyazov from Balkanabat. He, by the way, is the current owner of the Turkmenistan Cup since last year and again makes a strong claim to leadership. The result of Yazgeldy is two hours and six minutes.

The whole route behind him was another strong representative of the Turkmen school of skyrunning – Alekper Ahmedov from Ashgabat. The gap between them gradually decreased and at the finish it was only three minutes, which for such a long track is not so much. Alekper is a holder of the Cup of Turkmenistan, and participant of international races on Elbrus – the highest mountain of Europe, where he demonstrated high results.

The third was another Ashgabat resident – a promising high-altitude runner Kirill Shoshinov. The young athlete persistently trains and confidently takes shape, due to which he burst into the top three runners-up.

The first among women was Vladlena Omelchenko from Ashgabat with a result of 3 hours and 14 minutes. Last year she was already a bronze medalist of the Turkmenistan Cup in skyrunning, and this year she made a significant reserve for leadership.