Florian Röser from Constance was the first runner to cross the finish line in Niedernhall. This was his third 10k run in Kochertal Valley. He finished in 31:03 minutes. Jacob Heink, who took second place, needed around two minutes longer. Sonja Huber from Jagstberg and Cornelia Schmitt from Seidelklingen also tackled the short course. The two runners are members of the 0-10-21 running group initiated by ebm-papst. Almost 60 of the event participants were from the group coached by Stephan Vuckovic, the Olympic triathlon silver medal-winner who has prepared them for the run since May. “The experience was wonderful! I am proud that I finished,” said Sonja Huber. She began running in February with Cornelia Schmitt and joined the group later. “It was worth it. The group gave me extra motivation,” she added. “We ran faster than we thought we would,” agreed Schmitt. “All the runners inspired each other.” The two needed around an hour for the course. Vuckovic also ran the course, but gave himself time to warm up. “At the beginning I ran with the group at the back,” he said. He gradually worked his way toward the front to keep coaching the 0-10-21 members. “I can only draw a positive conclusion,” he said. “Everyone came: I saw familiar faces at the finish line and on the course. That’s actually why you do it.” Carmen Ehrler from Westernhausen ran in her first half-marathon under his coaching. “It was fantastic. The friends and drummers along the course boosted my motivation,” said the 27-year-old. “It would be cool to participate in an event like that again.” It took her a bit over two hours to finish the 21-kilometer course. At that point, Bettina Englisch (TSG Heilbronn) had already crossed the finish line. She won for the fourth time in a row. Her winning time was 1:20:57 hours. “I appeared on all the promotional posters, so I wanted to join in again this year and win,” Englisch said. “Many runners along the course recognized me!” Michael Chalupsky (TSG Heidelberg) was the fastest man in the half-marathon, finishing in 1:13:49 hours. The fastest male marathon runner was Martin Schwab from Rothenburg ob der Tauber, who finished in 2:47:41 hours. “The course here has become more difficult, but it is now more interesting,” Schwab reported. “You have to master 400 meters of uphill segments. That slows down your time, but the view among the vineyards makes up for it.” Sandra Gruidl (Sterzach) was the fastest woman in the marathon with a time of 3:40:42 hours. As usual for many years, the Nordic walkers kicked off the 22nd edition of the ebm-papst Marathon on Saturday. With 51 walkers, Tanja’s Stars was the largest group among the 356 participants. Peter Wunder was the first to cross the finish line. “That was my eighth ebm-papst Marathon walk at least,” he said. “It was a perfect walk: not as steep or as hot as it was in the past.” And also as usual, the field that toed the starting line was international. The walkers came from Germany, France, Italy, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Finland. Jukka Blafield came from Helsinki just to participate. “I am here for the seventh time. The course wasn’t easy, but it was very pleasant. Not too much sun, hardly any rain and no wind,” he said. Klas Alner from Stockholm was also there. “It’s a wonderful event,” he said. However, he was just part of the crowd during the Nordic walking event. On Sunday he participated in the 10K run. That afternoon, the handbikers and inline skaters rang in the event’s grand finale. The approximately 10,000 spectators on the marathon grounds enjoyed a diverse entertainment program and lined the course to cheer on the ebm-papst Marathon participants. “It is wonderful to see the warm response to the event,” said Hauke Hannig, ebm-papst spokesperson. “We are glad that the number of participants and spectators has held steady in recent years.” Official aftermovie and further informationen: Watch the Marathon aftermovie now on YouTube (with English subtitles). Take a look at our Facebook page and the official website for more pictures and news.