First there was the standstill, then came the VCM pop-up runs. The Vienna City Marathon team started these runs in the summer of 2020 after the first Corona lockdown. We simply wanted to organise events again and motivate the running community.
While professional sports were able to continue during the pandemic, recreational sports had been pushed almost to zero. The joy was enormous when small runs were allowed to take place again under Covid-19 conditions.
With lots of enthusiasm, chilling music, fine finisher gifts and thanks to support from adidas Austria and adidas Runners Vienna, we held several runs in the Prater and on the Nussberg in Vienna.
On 15 July, the premiere took place on a summery Wednesday evening. This running comeback over 5 kilometres with 250 participants, divided over several start time windows, brought forth an atmosphere that can only exist in this special situation. Bernhard Url (Die Sportpraxis) in 16:54 minutes and Victoria Abulesz (LG Wien) in 21:11 minutes were the fastest.
The term "finally" was above everything: finally the joy of running together, of coming together, of being allowed to organise, of effort and ambition, of being cheered on, of passing the finish line, of having made it, maybe even with a best time, of an ice cream afterwards and of the motivation that arises when many people do the same thing and have fun doing it.
Even in the evening hours it was still a good 30°C in the Prater Hauptallee. The second VCM Pop-up run on 12 August was a real summery pleasure.
The tension grew until the final run - especially at the Cheering Zone of the adidas Runners Vienna. Overall winner Lukas Schwarzlmüller (18:02 minutes) came from the ranks of this running community. The fastest woman, Anna Glack, was just over a minute behind in 19:09.
Panoramic views on Vienna, the Danube and the wineyards: It was a very special running experience at the third VCM Pop-up Run on 6 September, on Vienna's Nussberg. Despite the change of weather to autumn, 200 amateur runners completed an impressive and challenging course through the wine and cultural landscape on the Nussberg in Vienna-Döbling, finishing in the middle of the vineyards at the Buschenschank Monte Nucum.
Great views of Vienna, a wonderful atmosphere at the finish and the "Nussberg medal" in the form of a wine cork were the rewards.
Sebastian Harding (Adidas Runners Vienna) in 24:48 minutes and Christa Wallner (LV Marswiese) in 29:33 minutes were the winners of this first run.
With the fourth edition, the VCM pop-up runs returned to the Prater. For the first time, 10 kilometres were on the programme in addition to the 5 kilometres.
It was a fine late summer run that produced a family-like and great running atmosphere until dusk. Josia Nusser, who had travelled from Germany, in 17:07 minutes and Alina Mesli (B-Fast) in 19:54 over 5 kilometres as well as Andriy Horen in 36:26 and Ines Preiß in 41:42 over 10 kilometres were the winners. As a reward and a preview of autumn, every finisher was given an ornamental pumpkin.
When will a running event pop up again? When the overall pandemic situation and the regulations make it possible, we want to organise again. Flexible, at short notice, adapted to the current regulations.
We are convinced that sport is part of the solution in times of the pandemic and that, with appropriate measures, runs can be held responsibly and with low risk. We and other organisers have proven this many times. We are happy about every event that can take place. This is what our heart beats for, and this is what we continue to do with all our commitment.
Keep fit and in shape!
Take care of your health, follow the rules and pass on your joy of running.