Victory for CERN runners at the Geneva Marathon

“Then I hit the wall and seriously started to struggle. At this point I had to convince myself that quitting wasn’t an option and that I needed to keep pushing.”

Despite the fatigue and depletion of energy, three CERN runners used muscular strength and mental force to secure first place for the CERN team in the “Challenge Entreprise” competition of the 15th edition of the Harmony Geneva Marathon for UNICEF (12 May 2019).

The CERN team, made up of Vladimir Loncar, Harry Perkins and Davide Bozzini, finished the 42.2 km race in a combined time of 8:58:34, a massive 27 minutes faster than the team that came in second place (HUG). In total, twenty-three teams from regional companies and organisations took part in the “Challenge Entreprise” race and a record 18,300 runners took to the start lines of the various race formats on offer at the event.

In order to prepare for such a race and indeed such a great victory, the three CERN runners explain that they train 4 to 6 times per week, averaging between 40 km and 100 km. All three had already run a marathon; this was Harry’s 3rd, Vladimir’s 4th and Davide’s 11th! The three decided to run as a team as not only does the competition help with the training motivation, especially through the cold winter, but the CERN Running Club also promotes team spirit and members are encouraged to enrol in races offering team and enterprise challenges.

Furthermore, 20 runners from the CERN Running Club successfully finished in one of the proposed races at this year’s Geneva Marathon event, amongst whom, CERN’s Steffen Doebert won the half marathon in the Men 50+ category.

CERN is known, among other things for its high-energy experiments, and now for its high-energy runners!

The CERN Running Club also triumphed at this year’s Tour du Canton with 26 CERN runners grouped in several teams. They performed extremely well with two first places in the ‘’classement entreprise’’ for the male and female teams, a sixth place for the second men’s team and some really good individual podiums. Congratulations to all who ran!

If this article has inspired you to take up running, why not join the CERN Running Club where you can take part in group training, suitable for beginners, intermediate and more advanced runners:


by Staff Association