Jan Šrubař Memorial

Memoriál Jana Šrubaře


The Jan Šrubař Memorial is one of the oldest ski races in Czechia and Slovakia.


Jindřich Navrátil, František Bartoš, Stanislav Indruch and the eldest son of Jan Šrubař, Břetislav, were at the cradle of its creation. They agreed to organize an annual cross-country relay race with the concept of a challenge cup with the prize changing ownership every year being a 60 cm high bronze statue of a runner by a renowned sculptor Professor Josef Luňáček. Pozvánka na I. veřejný ročník 1949The first year of the memorial was held in 1949, with the start, handoff and finish in the Frenštát city square. The following year, it was held in Pustevny. This place remained, with a few exceptions, the traditional venue for this oldest Beskydy ski race. With the boom of skiing and the emergence of two-day races, allowing ranking competitions and league team competitions, the interest in the stand-alone relay race dwindled. For this reason, the status of the memorial was changed in 1963 to an individual race for men and women.

It reached the peak of its popularity nationwide in 1969-75 when it became part of the League 2 team races. The greatest participation was recorded in 1970, with 171 men, 78 women and 39 relays competing for victory. In that year, the memorial was a qualifying race for the National Championships, with all Czechoslovak top skiers of the time taking part in the competition.

Karel Sacký, a Frenštát racer and representative of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, is the most successful competitor in the race, with four individual victories in 1963, 1967, 1968 and 1969.

The course lengths were fixed at 15 km for men and 5 km for women.

Memoriál Jana Šrubaře 1974Until 1990s, the courses and the location of the start and finish could be changed according to the need and snow conditions. Mostly, the courses comprised only a single leg, with the course usually including points at Libušín, the landing area of the ski jumping hill, Čerťák and the saddle of Kněhyně.

Over time, the area at the ski jump tower turned out to be the optimal point for the start and finish of the race from the perspectives of the trail preparation as well as the public accessibility and gradually, the Pustevny Cross Country Skiing Area was built there. Tracks of 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 km were prepared and widened, and three service huts were built in the starting and finish area.

In 2004 – 2008, the memorial was held as a two-day event over 30 and 50km. However, the ruggedness and elevation difference of the 5km circuit proved to be too challenging for such long-distance runs and, hence, the event format was rolled back to a one-day race of 25km.