Knights from Spain, Russia and France battle for glory in medieval style tournament

The grounds of a Spanish castle became the site of a tournament modelled on medieval combat between knights in full armour.

With Belmonte Castle in Cuenca towering over the combatants, the National Medieval Combat Tournament, now in its fourth year, saw teams from Russia and France joining the event.

Medieval combat is based on fighting tournaments held 500 years ago during the medieval period.

The modern version of the sport was created in Europe a little over twenty years ago and is now spreading rapidly throughout the rest of the world.

Juanma Ruiz, 35-year-old Sevilla-based team member, said "Without a doubt [the best thing] is the adrenaline. It is a historical thing, very visual. Once you start with this sport, you will never leave it.

The sport consists of fights between two sides, be they duels or melees, but always under official regulations regarding equipment and technique.

Samantha Chapman, a 28-year-old member of an all-female team, said the sport "pushes you to your limits, and when you reach your limits you want to overcome yourself, to go further".

There is a very strict disciplinary code to safeguard the safety of the participants.

The host site of the tournament, Belmonte Castle, located southwest of the province of Cuenca, was declared a historic monument within the National Artistic Treasury by decree in 1931 and is now a Bien de Interés Cultural.

In 2020 Belmonte Castle will host the Medieval Combat World Championship for the second time after an agreement was reached between the management of the Castle and IMCF (International Medieval Combat Federation).

The Tournament will continue on to Monday.

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Medieval combat is based on fighting tournaments held 500 years ago. Source: Associated Press

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