This year’s half marathon in České Budějovice was newly held under the brand Mattoni Running Festival. The winner was German Sebastian Hendel. Among the women, Ukraine’s Maryna Nemchenko triumphed, improving the European record. Patrik Vebr and Hana Homolkova were the best Czech runners, which carries the World Athletic Road Race Label.

The race

The winner in the České Budějovice Half Marathon was Sebastian Hendel from Germany. From the start he was in a large lead pack, but before the halfway point he was running alone. Hendel ran the South Bohemia half marathon well and on pace to break the European record. However, he missed it by half a minute, finishing in the time of 1:03:38.

“I’m really happy that my winning streak in RunCzech races continues. I tried to break the time under one hour and three minutes. It was good at the tenth kilometre, but as time went on it got worse and my legs were hurting. It was a great experience, I enjoyed my first start in České Budějovice,” said Hendel. “When I was running back to the square, many people were cheering my name. It was a really great atmosphere,” added Hendel.

The second place went to Italian Daniele D’Onofrio, and third was Ukrainian Mykola Mevsha, who improved his personal best significantly. The best Czech runner was Patrik Vebr (1:08:38), bettered Petr Pechek and Tomáš Křivohlávek.

“Although I don’t really like to run races in training pace, I chose this strategy for today. My coach and I decided to do it mainly for health reasons and also because of the upcoming track races. But the overall assessment is positive and I am glad that especially my health is holding up,”  Vebr summed up.

The fastest woman was Maryna Nemchenko from Ukraine, who ran a significant part of the race alone trying to catch some men to help her pace. “If I had run with another female competitor, it would have been easier, running alone is hard. I always tried to catch up with whoever was ahead of me, I’m satisfied,” Nemchenko assessed after the race.

The Ukrainian surpassed the best European race time of Tereza Hrochova from 2022 by half a minute. Her compatriot Nataliya Semenovych finished second, while Moldova’s Lilia Fisikovici finished third. Hana Homolkova succeeded in a close battle between the Czech competitors, beating Aneta Císařová. Tereza Jagošová finished third.

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