UIPM 2021 Global Laser Run City Tour: Portugal, Italy and Venezuela come to the party
The revival of the Global Laser Run City Tour, UIPM’s most dynamic development mechanism, continued in June 2021 with events taking place in four countries.
Russia continued to build on the progress made across Eastern Europe in May, after a long shutdown due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, with two competitions. Portugal, Italy and Venezuela also joined the party.
The continuing restart of the Laser Run scene coincided with the UIPM 2021 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships, which brought the two sports together for the second time in Cairo (EGY) in June.
Something for everybody in Chelyabinsk (RUS)
One of the challenges facing Global Laser Run City Tour organisers is to create opportunities for urban communities to participate in an attractive venue that minimises disruption to the city.
The city of Chelyabinsk in Russia seems to have mastered the formula having held its third GLRCT in the beautiful Rifey part next to the forest – a popular beauty spot.
Among the 210 participants on June 6 were athletes, schoolchildren and students, residents of the city and the region.
A spokesperson for the local organising committee said: “Many families came to the competition and there was something for everyone. On the main stage, wonderful creative teams performed, while athletes demonstrated the beauty of fencing.
“The most popular feature was the laser shooting range, where boys and girls could try to shoot a pistol like real athletes. On the fencing piste everyone tried to use an epee, and in a historical corner everyone could become acquainted with the milestones of the development of Modern Pentathlon in the Chelyabinsk region, coaches and champions defending the honour of the region at the Russian and international levels.”
Lovers of sport and healthy lifestyle drawn to Smolensk (RUS)
Six days later on June 12, another Russian city used a parkland venue to give people of all ages a chance to sample the joy of Laser Run.
In Readovsky Park, Smolensk, 102 entrants were drawn including athletes and amateurs from the city and surrounding region, representatives of sports schools and general lovers of sport and a healthy lifestyle.
A spokesperson for the local organising committee said: “From the beginning of the first races until late in the evening, the event generated the atmosphere of a sports festival, with musical accompaniment and tremendous support from the audience.
“The races of young athletes born in 2009-2010 aroused particular interest, and the whole day was charged with vibes of athletic spirit. All participants were awarded with diplomas, badges and keychains with competitions logo and the winners won medals, certificates and valuable commemorative prizes.”
Intense emotions in Coimbra (POR)
On the banks of the river Mondego in the city of Coimbra, the Portuguese Laser Run community reconvened to celebrate their passion for the sport.
The event on June 12 was a full day of competition, entertainment and fun which saw more than 200 athletes aged from seven to 70 enjoy intense moments of emotion and competitiveness.
Laser Run has been highly popular in Portugal since the UIPM 2017 Laser Run World Championships were held in Lisbon (POR) and the country holds an annual Laser Run league which encompasses official UIPM GLRCT competitions and other municipal Laser Run events across all corners of the nation, reaching thousands of young athletes.
A merry multi-sports festival in Modena (ITA)
The popularity of Laser Run is beyond doubt but sometimes it can benefit from being staged alongside other sports and the 82nd edition of the Modena Fair was a case in point.
The Italian city staged a GLRCT as part of a sporting festival that also gave visitors a chance to try volleyball, golf, basketball and martial arts.
Arranged by Pentathlon Modena, the event drew almost 100 participants including young aspiring athletes, athletes and Masters as well as simple enthusiasts. It was one of the first ‘open’ sporting events to have taken place in the city since the beginning of the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
Everybody’s invited in Miranda (VEN)
The Venezuelan Federation of Modern Pentathlon brough together 213 athletes from four regions of the country for a highly inclusive GLRCT on June 26.
The Miranda Park event drew a diverse set of participants after organisers decided to encourage, motivate and incentivise boys and girls aged 11 to 16, while also enabling the participation of children with special needs so they could feel part of the activity.
A spokesperson for the local organising committee said: “It really was a day full of emotions and the athletes were awarded with a certificate and a souvenir gift with Laser Run and Federation logos.
“We would like to thank the President of UIPM for allowing us in 2021 to develop such a valuable and important event, which allows the growth and catchment of future athletes in our country.”