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    Over 1,300 Athletes From 11 Countries Take Part in 50km Marathon in Murmansk

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    Over 1,300 athletes from Russia, Finland, the US, Germany, Australia and other countries took part in the 50km marathon held in Murmansk on Saturday and Sunday, the Murmansk Committee on Physical Culture and Sports reports.

    The ski marathon concluded the 84th International Festival of the North. It took place over a period of two days: Saturday was dedicated to freestyle and Sunday to the classical race. The Murmansk races are part of the Russian marathon series Russialoppet and the Evroloppet international series.

    The organizers note that participants from the Russian regions as well as Belarus, Estonia, Kazakhstan, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Austria, the US, Australia and other countries signed up  for the marathon. Olympic champions Anna Bogaly and Olga Zaitseva and World champion Alexei Petukhov were also among the participants.

    "Alexei Petukhov was the leader in the freestyle race until the very last moment. The result of the Murmansk skier was 2 hours 14 minutes and 4.2 seconds. Athletes from Monchegorsk won the women's race and occupied all three podium places: Anna Belaya won the gold, clocking 2 hours 31 minutes and 41 seconds," the organizers said after the race.

    On Sunday, Olympic champion Nikita Kozlov and silver medalist of the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver Alexander Panzhinsky competed in the classic race. Alexei Dvoskin from St. Petersburg won gold among the men and Valentina Kaminskaya from Belarus, among the women.

    The program of the Festival of the North includes competitions in various sports, such as ski races, skating, yachting, alpine skiing, biathlon, national sports, field hockey and mini football on the snow. This year, there were competitions in 16 athletic disciplines.


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