about the race

It all started in 1979.

It was the time, when the ex-Yugoslav regime started promoting the “healthy way of life” and supporting the organization of mass sport events.

The older generations still remember cross-country-skiing and cycling marathons, out of which only Franja and Vršič are still active.

The paths of Šmarna gora served for a long time as a training ground for daily fitness. Various stories circulated among us in the style: “Do you know John? He said he climbed the mountain in about 10 minutes. Uau, he is a tough guy…”

In such conditions, the decision to organize the race was a logical step and the idea matured in the fall of 1979.

At the very beginning it was decided that the almost abandoned circular path around Šmarna gora will be used.

At this stage, the organization was very basic – on site entries, start at the foothill and finish on the summit, medals for the winners and a souvenir pins for all competitors. And hot tee of course.

For the first dozen of years, the Race was a pleasant local event.

Just before independence in 91, the first Šmarna gora Record was organized with a more extensive organizational scheme.

In 1992, Smarna gora race was the first MR National Championship and this well-organized event was the beginning of seriously organized Mountain running in Slovenia.

Smarna gora race was after that every year the final race of Slovenian Mountain running Cup and later also 20 years the World Cup final race.

With its inclusion in the International Mountain Running Federation’s competition calendar in the late 1990s, the Run gained a solid foothold in international recognition, culminating in its quarter-century anniversary in 2004 with the WMRA Grand Prix final and the prestigious IAAF permit. All subsequent years Running remains part of the iron repertoire of the International Mountain Running Federation. In 2012, it was agreed that the final of the Grand Prix would be the Turkish Bursa, which had previously hosted the European Championships and the World Cup, but was canceled just before the performance. By accepting the old role, Šmarna gora has just saved the reputation of the Grand Prix. Two years later, in 2014, the international federation brought the title of the cycle closer to other sports and changed the “WMRA Grand Prix” into the “Mountain Running Word Cup”, the “World Cup” in our opinion. In 2013, the organizers faced the personal hardship of one of the best runners of recent times, Eritrean Azeira Teklaya, and helped him save his family with a charity campaign during the days of the event.

In 2019, the Run was marked by the 40th anniversary – there are not many sports events with such a tradition in Slovenia! After this year, the organizers consciously decided that the space in both the Slovenian and the World Cup, after more than 20 years of hosting both finals, will be given to fresh organizers.

In 2021, the International Mountain running family recognised Smarna gora as “The Greatest MR race of all time”

In the “covid years” 2020-21-22, the race was one of the few events of its kind that was organized despite various restrictions.

In 2020, the event was transformed into a 2-days event called the ” the Smarna gora Run ” – on Friday the “Record” took place, and on Saturday the “Race”.