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  • Talma Gotteiner

Arava Challenge: A New Messenger Race

Updated: Dec 5, 2019

Hi there,

A new messenger race is underway in Israel and will be held in the Arava desert region, just south of the Dead Sea for the first time. The messenger race will consist of 12 sections of 120 km going through several of the nature reserve routes of the Central Arava Regional Council. Additional 2,5, and 10 K races will be initiated a few hours after the messenger race starts.

WHEN: Friday morning, Jan 10th, 2020 starting at 05:00 A.M. for the messenger race and at 8:30 for the other 2,5 and 10 K racecourses.

Arava Challenge: A New Messenger Race

Credit: Ronen Topelberg

The Central Arava Regional Council is inviting runners from all over the country for the first messenger race in the desert. The Arava Challenge Race Course will begin at Sapir Park and will be spread over a 120km route passing through the local communities and through sections of the nature reserve of the Central Arava Regional Council including Makhteshim, Ein Yahav, the Arava streams (Nahal Shahak, Masor and Hatzeva), Sheizaf Reserve, Zin Cliff reserve and the Ashush reserve. The race is divided into 12 sections. Registration is available for groups of two people and up aged 18 and up. In addition, there will be three additional popular race courses of 2, 5 and 10 K also leaving from Sapir Park.

The Arava races were founded by the Sports Department of the Central Arava Regional Council in memory of The late Yoni Friedman, born in the Arava, who died in 2007 at age 22 from cancer. The event produced by an active applause company.

The late Yoni Friedman was born in 1985 in Moshav Tzofar in the Central Arava Region. He was a nimble and playful boy who loved to run in the vast expanses and magical landscapes of the Arava. After his passing, his father, Yehuda, knew that the best and right way to commemorate him was to start a race in his memory. In the beginning, the race was limited to only Yoni's family and close friends, but as the years passed more joined and, as mentioned, will host Israel's new messenger race for the first time.

At the starting point of the race there will be a big happening with a variety of sports activities for the whole family as well as stalls and a farmers market selling local produce from the Arava region. In addition, the running or accompanying families can enjoy the many attractions and activities that the Central Arava Region has to offer, including yoga workshops, local tours and restaurants.

Arava Challenge named after Yoni Friedman

Schedule of Events

Jan 10th, 2020

03:30 - Opening of the assembly complex and distribution of kits

05:00 - Messenger Race start

8.30 am - 10k start

8.45 am - 5k start

9:15 am - 2k start

10:30 am - Trophy Distribution Ceremony


For details and registration go to the Arava Challenge Hebrew Website

Get a 10% Discount Code on the 'Members Only' page. (If you aren't a member, you'll be directed to subscribe).



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