AROUND SLOVAKIA

Sixty mushers race in Zuberec

THE SEVENTH year of the Zuberec Grand Prix in dogsled racing was organised over the weekend of March 13-14. Shortly before the weekend, it was not clear if the race could be held as there was just a little snow. But the race organisers persevered and it was a good decision, as a generous snowfall arrived and it was not even necessary to use snow-making machines in the event.

Keep it focused: preparing to mush.Keep it focused: preparing to mush. (Source: Courtesy of Klaster Orava)

THE SEVENTH year of the Zuberec Grand Prix in dogsled racing was organised over the weekend of March 13-14. Shortly before the weekend, it was not clear if the race could be held as there was just a little snow. But the race organisers persevered and it was a good decision, as a generous snowfall arrived and it was not even necessary to use snow-making machines in the event.

The Museum of Orava Village in Zuberec hosted the race and an excellent spirit accompanied the whole event said Zuberec Mayor Vladimír Šiška, adding with great satisfaction that this year’s race had 65 competitors from Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, as well as the recent World Champion from the German Oberwiesenthal, the Czech racer Jiří Krkoška, in comparison to only 25 teams last year, the e-trend web portal wrote.

Ivan Vaško, the World Champion in the sport of skijoring (skiing attached to one’s running dog , moose, horse, motorbike, or four-wheeler) also competed in Zuberec, TV Oravia wrote on its website. Altogether, there were nine categories of competition even though the seven-and-half-kilometres long track was not very demanding for long-distance dogsled racers such as Siberian huskies or Alaskan malamuts.

The event hosted more than just the races as it included rides in four-wheelers, horse riding, a hot-air balloon, country and folk music, and much more. The atmosphere reminded participants of Christmas because of the heavy snow and local winter delicacies.

The open-air museum’s administrator, Richard Janoštin, spoke about the history and traditions of Orava and individual exhibits and monuments at the museum, saying that events like this help promote the region and boost its tourism.


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