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Buhurt Prime 2020: Medieval fierceness and physical endurance pillars of the best sport spirit in Fontvieille

The Principality has just hosted, for the second time, the international endgame of Buhurt League championship. On Saturday the 15th February 2020, the most popular tent-theatre, Chapiteau de l’Espace de Fontvieille, was completely transformed to welcome Buhurt Prime, the ultimate international tournament in Historical Medieval Battle (HMB). The event, under the high patronage of the Sovereign Prince and the support of Gouvernement Princier, attracted an increased number of visitors and families to experience a slice of Middle Ages. The best horseless knights, according to the annual official score rating, battled on a special round shaped indoor arena, equipped with Medieval detailed copies of armour and weapons.

Buhurt Prime 2020
Vitalii Gryzlov (in the middle), Captain, and ‘Bear Paw’ team being awarded the 1st place cup by the Sovereign Prince (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Buhurt League

A parade of brave hearts from Czech Republic, France, Mexico, Poland, Russia, United Kingdom and Ukraine gathered in the Principality to perform at their best and become the strongest globally. Wearing around 30 kilos of metal is quite a challenge, succeeding in staying up in a matter of minutes, five opponents against five, is stuff for the bravest. After a fierce competition supported by a pretty awesome cheering, the Russian Bear Paw’ knights were awarded by Prince Albert II of Monaco as the world champions sharing the podium with two further teams from Russia, respectively ‘Western Tower’ (2nd place) and ‘Old Friends’ (3rd place). An unprecedented victory that reaffirms the supremacy of Russian territory at the top of international rankings in this sport. The winners, in fact, representing the Swiss iconic Club of Historical Reenactment ‘Bern’, have already been considered one of the most powerful team in the world, boasting a long list of prizes gained with honour and a respectful approach towards the opponents.

Buhurt Prime 2020
Buhurt Prime, 2020 edition, final celebration in the presence of the Sovereign Prince and the top three Russian finishers (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Buhurt League
Buhurt Prime 2020
Buhurt Prime, 2020 edition, final celebration in the presence of the Sovereign Prince and the top three Russian finishers (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Buhurt League

Anyway, nothing is taken for granted in Buhurt and Russia has to face increasingly skilled teams from the rest of the world, highly motivated to prevail.

Finally, after the victory we could give a sigh of relief”, stated to HelloMonaco Vitalii Gryzlov (V.G.), Captain of ‘Bear Paw’ – “we have been kept spirits high until the very last moment, being animated by previous victories at Dynamo Cup (Eastern Europe master tournament)”.

Buhurt Prime 2020
‘Bear Paw’ knights during combat sessions at ‘Buhurt Prime’ Playoff Stage (Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15thFebruary 2020).© Buhurt League
Buhurt Prime 2020
Pavel Chautchenka, member of ‘Aquila Sequania’, being interviewed by HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati
Buhurt Prime 2020
Gustavo Gaytán Ortiz, member of ACM Mexico, and his teammate Andrew Ali, being interviewed by HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati

HelloMonaco: But what made the Russian team being successful?

V.G.:First of all, coherence: we have practiced a lot to improve teamwork and mutual understandings during combat” – “last but not least, we can rely on Thor (Sergei Kuritsyn) who has proved to be the most powerful and almost undefeatable, during the Season”, he concluded.

‘Western Towers’ have been attending the World Championship Battle of the Nations for a long time, being the best in every combat of the past Season. ‘Old Friends’ from Saint Petersburg have a reputation for being strongly determined to win. Besides the official Playoff, on Saturday afternoon, a friendly match between Grimaldi Milites, the most popular team in Monaco, and the ‘Team Marche – Club Feltrio’, major Italian team from historical Urbino, livened up the audience. At the end of a fair fight in mutual respect, the Monegasque knights recorded their victory supported by their fans and the Sovereign Prince whom they have honoured.

Buhurt Prime 2020
Aleksei Naiderov, Captain, and ‘Old Friends’ team celebrating their 3rd place prize (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Buhurt League

I am personally delighted to perform in my own Country since usually we play in other parts of Europe” underlined Joffrey from Grimaldi Milites – “in technical terms we are working hard to qualify in the next edition being present in a larger number of tournaments from now on, starting from the one held in Poland in late March”, he added.

Buhurt Prime 2020
Joffrey Laberche, member of ‘Grimaldi Milites’, being interviewed by HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati
Buhurt Prime 2020
Alessandro Vernizzi, member of ‘Feltrio Club’, and his teammate Marco Fiaccadori, being interviewed by HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati

Medieval Battle takes time to deal with. As a matter of fact, it marks a mighty combination of martial arts and cross fit that requires many hours of hard training.

But what makes professional Medieval battles more and more popular in terms of players and supporters? HelloMonaco asked Edouard Eme (E.E.), President of the Historical Medieval Battle International Association (HMBIA).

Buhurt Prime 2020
Edouard Eme, President of HMBIA, being interviewed by HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati

HelloMonaco: Mr. Eme, 2020 Buhurt Prime is full of exciting news and surprises, can you tell us about that?

E.E.:  Definitely yes. This year we are assisting to a greater participation of Ukrainian teams, notably Taurus UA and Warriors of Light. Then we count on the promising up-and-comer Mexican team recently qualified in the American Buhurt Masters. This testifies a turnover in entering in such an exclusive competition as a result of a long commitment throughout a series of tough tournaments to gain score points. So, all participating teams deserve being here.

Buhurt Prime 2020
‘Bear Paw’ Vs. ‘Western Towers’ combat at ‘Buhurt Prime’ Playoff Stage (Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15thFebruary 2020).© Buhurt League
Buhurt Prime 2020
Renewed choreography at Buhurt Prime, 2020 edition (Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Buhurt League

HelloMonaco: How important is to keep historical traditions in this discipline?

E.E.: I am a fervent defender of the most cultural side of this sport. Playing this combat practice allows us to relive our history, that extraordinary Medieval heritage. Consequently, it is extremely important to set Medieval battles in places that are strongly rooted to Middle Ages. The Principality of Monaco is a great example of that being also a territory under the leadership of such an historic Princely Family. We are proud, then, of becoming a pivotal annual event and I do hope to keep organizing Buhurt Prime in Monaco for a long time testifying its long-lasting tradition. Currently, we can’t conceive this tournament without Monaco!

Buhurt Prime 2020
Irina Kamaeva, director of marketing and PR at ‘Courage of Ages’, welcoming HelloMonaco (Buhurt Prime, Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati
Buhurt Prime 2020
Medieval-style entertainers with HelloMonaco magazine at ‘Buhurt Prime’, 2020 edition (Chapiteau Espace Fontvieille, 15th February 2020).© Maurizio Abbati

The 2020 edition of Buhurt Prime has been a success as last year and perhaps more for its welcoming and convivial violence-free atmosphere without nothing but good sport principles on stage and much more. Just few steps out, in fact, a whole Medieval village entertained the audience all day with a variety of unique handicrafts, delicatessen and a series of soft tournament workshops for kids, teenagers and adults, plunged in their historical shoes.

Official website: www.buhurtprime.com

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