It was on last Friday evening (19 Nov) when Horst Milde got one of the warmest
rounds of applause of his life for an honour which he rates as the most
valuable he has ever received at an international level.
During a reception the IAAF, which is holding its Council meeting in Berlin
this weekend, took the opportunity to honour Horst Milde for his lifelong work
and commitment for athletics, with IAAF President Lamine Diack presenting him
with the IAAF Plaque of Merit.
Milde is Berlin’s Fred Lebow. The 65 year-old not only is the Race
Director of the Real Berlin Marathon plus a number of other big road races. He
also has a tremendous share of the great development of road running in Germany
and especially in Berlin. If one speaks about Horst Milde in the capital he is
referred to the man who taught Berlin running.
“I was very proud to be honoured by the IAAF. I never expected this.
But I have to stress that this success was possible only because I have got a
great team of co-organisers, who are also absolutely committed to our
350 races in 40 years
In 40 years he has organised almost 350 races with altogether around 1.25
million participants. Worldwide these are quite unique figures taking into
account that it was one single race director for all the events. And probably
they can only be matched by the New York Road Runners Club.
It was in 1964 when Milde and his fellow students started one of the first
ever cross country races in Germany. Additionally this race in the West Berlin
wood (Grunewald) was one of the very first ones nationwide that allowed
everyone to take part. And at once this became the biggest German cross country
race with more than 700 competitors.