Ivan Pampi Loborec, Croatia: “As for the future, I foresee a lot of official HMB clubs in Croatia united in the League”

17 Nov 2014 11:16

In 2014, Croatia hosted the World Championship in HMB “Battle of the Nations”, and showed itself as a worthy opponent on the lists. The National Team of the country was a “dark horse” of the Championship.

Ivan Pampi Loborec, president of the National HMB Association of Croatia lifted a veil of secrecy concerning the National Team, told us about development of the HMB movement in the country and preparations for HMB tournaments.

– Ivan Pampi Loborec, president of the National HMB Association of Croatia:

“For now, there are no HMB clubs in Croatia. All together we are a “brotherhood of reenactors” which consists of various groups and associations. Our groups reenact and organize historical events, participate in medieval shows and performances. And doing this, we find an opportunity to devote time to medieval battles, which we love a lot. My group is called “Knights of Zelingrad”. It was founded in 2007, but some of us had been in the movement long before that moment. This movement is considered very young here, because ten years are not a long period of time.”

Despite the absence of official clubs, Croatian HMB Association considers a possibility to establish clubs within the reenactment groups. According to Loborec, the guys train and prepare for competitions being united in groups. According to the president of the Association, their training is versatile and efficient.

– Ivan Pampi Loborec:

“We learn the art of historical combat fencing and swordsmanship, train for buhurt categories and duels. Each of us pays attention to physical training, we go to gyms, etc. We also deal with wrestling and combat training all together, it’s easier to train as a group, as more experienced people can see your mistakes and advise on how to eliminate them. In addition, we have meetings to develop strategy, watch videos of our fights and discuss them. Our greatest success was our participation in the buhurt category at “Grunwald” in Poland, where we showed ourselves as quick learners :).”

Reenactors of Croatia take HMB sport and its development seriously. Ivan Pampi Loborec and his associates do everything possible to make the movement popular and attract new people.

— Ivan Pampi Loborec:

“We have about five serious groups whose members are interested in developing their skills and abilities on the battlefield. One of them is, of course, “Knights of Zelingrad”. We hold negotiations and try to unite all the groups (future clubs) in a single league, we organize fights and even Croatian Championship in HMB. We get assistance from the National HMB Association of Croatia, whose president I am. We have decided a long ago to promote this sport and medieval festivals to attract public’s attention to HMB sport, to make people join us.

We attract people at such festivals and tournaments. They see one side of the coin, namely a great show, fighting in armor … and they like it, they have a desire to know more about it. We invite people to attend our trainings, to see how and what we do, how we develop our techniques and skills. Many of the visitors come and stay with us. They become members of our team.”

Today, “Knights of Zelingrad” have forty people. The group unites HMB fans of all ages, we have old people, children, students and middle-aged people. The group has about a dozen men who are ready to represent Croatia in “Triathlon”, as well as in “5 vs 5″.

Hard work of the guys of «Knights of Zelingrad» has not gone unnoticed. Ivan and his team have already managed to make a name for themselves in the HMB movement.

– Ivan Pampi Loborec:

“My group is well-known in Croatia, people know we have serious fighters. We are also widely known outside the country, especially after the World Championship in HMB “Battle of the Nations”-2014, where we participated as Team Croatia. Our participation in other tournaments gave us popularity as well.”

Like any association president, Loborec has grandiose plans and is sure about the future.

– Ivan Pampi Loborec, president of the National HMB Association of Croatia:

“As for the future, I foresee a lot of official HMB clubs in Croatia united in the League. I also want to organize and hold a HMB Championship of Croatia, which will gather really good fighters, able to compete on equals with other European men.”


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