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photo of Martin Wolfer during the SOLA relay

Martin Wolfer competing four years ago in this same event.

Back on May 5, our European representative, CRR Martin Wolfer, competed in a rather unique cross-country relay in the Switzerland—the SOLA-Stafette, a favorite of his near where he lives that he has run annually for several decades. His team finished 11th of 944 relay teams. He provided the details below.

Here are his explanation of the race and the results for his team.

“The name of the race is ‘SOLA-Stafette.’ The name SOLA (‘sun’) originates in Sweden, where in 1967 they organized a relay with that name, from Göteborg to Karlstadt. In Zürich, it was held for the first time in 1972. I [first] participated in 1978…. I [have now] started 36 times in this event.

“In the [map below], you see that the race is located around Zürich [the city at the head of the lake]. The changing points are chosen such that they can be easily reached by public transportation. The overall distance is 114 km, split into 14 [unequal and non-conventional distance] legs.

map of the SOLA-Stafette relay in Switzerland

“In the result sheet for our team [below], you see the distances in kilometers and the altitude-meters (hm) that had to be run (meters of rise in altitude, not the difference between start and finish). My leg was the third to last [leg 12, marked as such on the map above], where men over 50 and women are allowed to take a shortcut. The distance for me was 5.83 km with 75 hm of altitude (not the regulation and listed 6.91 km with 125 hm).”

Team result with Martin Wolfer’s stage results highlighted

“The first column (‘Rang’) shows the individual rank, with ‘Zeit’ [being] the time and ‘Rückstand’ the time behind the best runner on that particular leg.
The ‘Rang’ in the second column is the rank of the team after that leg, with the overall time and the time behind the first team.”

Martin ran 23:02 for his leg, which equates to a 19:45 cross-country 5K. Pretty complicated relay, but it’s clear that Wolfer, who had held Delaware resident age-group records in both the 5K and the marathon back in the late 1980s (when he trained here on Creek Road), is still enjoying the sport and running strong.