Ready, steady… relay!

Thursday 5 June. With another year comes another success for CERN’s Relay Race. With 76 teams taking part it was the second highest turnout in the race’s history.

‘The Shabbys’ won the relay race in 10 minutes 51 seconds.

As popular as ever, this year the relay race took on the atmosphere of a mini carnival. Gathering on the lawn outside Restaurant 1, various stalls and attractions added to the party feeling of the event, with beer courtesy of ‘AGLUP’, the Belgian beer club, and a wandering jazz group entertaining spectators and competitors alike.

Reflecting the greater involvement of other associations in the relay race, the president of the Staff Association Clubs Committee, James Purvis, was the guest of honour, launching the start of the race and presenting the prizes. As regular followers of the race could have probably predicted, The Shabbys were once again victorious and claimed first place. The team members this year were Camille Ruiz Llama, Olivier Barriere, Matteo Sironi, Herve Cornet, Pascal Fernier and Olivier Denis.

Andy Butterworth, secretary of the CERN Running Club, particularly wanted to thank the other associations who made the event such a success, "This year lots more clubs participated. For example this was the fourth year the Open Your Eyes film club was there, as well as Kayak Club and the Fitness Club – who did a particularly worthwhile stretching session after the race."

Ultimately, the relay race is about taking part and getting involved in the CERN community spirit. Renilde Vanden Broeck, who has run in the race at least 10 times in the past 16 years, sums this sentiment up perfectly: "I run because I enjoy the atmosphere of having so many young people from different places all coming together through sport. I think it’s great that it has evolved into a real ‘happening’ at CERN. Maybe next time they should have hot dogs!"