18,000 runners for IBVVMM 2018
by Shrutee K/DNS
Mumbai, Dec 5, 2018: Full Marathon defending champion Karan Singh, a former Mumbai Marathon winner, and last year’s runner-up Mohit Rathore, both from the Indian Army, will lead a strong field of 36 of the country’s top most long distance male and female athletes in the 8th Indiabulls Home Loans Vasai Virar Mayors Marathon, in association with Cigna TTK, which will be flagged off from three different locations, in Virar and Vasai on Sunday, December 9, 2018.
Joining the country’s leading distance runners will be around 18000 plus participants, among them 840 Full Marathoners, 4300 plus Half Marathoners, 2500 plus 11 km Runners and 650 athletes in the new 5K timed category. Running in their wake will be around 10000 plus athletes in the junior age group races, over 1.5 kms, 3 kms, 5 kms, 7 kms and 11 kms and the Dhamal Dhaav over 4 kms.
The Battle Run, an exclusive event for 4-member corporate and running group teams over the half marathon distance has drawn 31 entries. The fastest running club in the half marathon Battle Run will be awarded a rolling trophy and prize money of Rs 1.50 lakhs, while the runner-up team and third placed team will take home Rs 90,000 and Rs 60,000 respectively. Organised by the Vasai Virar City Municipal Corporation and the Vasai Taluka Kala Kreeda Vikas Mandal and promoted by Aryanz Sports PR & Events, the Indiabulls Home Loans Vasai Virar Mayor’s Marathon provides a prize fund in excess of Rs 45 lakhs, which is the richest in the country for Indian athletes and amateur runners.
The winner of the Full Marathon for men will stand to gain Rs 2.50 lakh, while the male and female winners of the Half Marathon will take home Rs 1.25 lakh each. There is an increase in the prize money for amateur runners as well in the different age groups.
Sprint queen Dutee Chand to be Guest of Honour: Keeping up with the practice of inviting top sports persons to be the guest of honour on race day, this year the Vasai Virar City Municipal Corporation has invited sprint queen Dutee Chand.
Dutee Chand is a double silver medalist at the recently concluded Jakarta Asian Games and also the third Indian women to ever qualify for the Women’s 100 metres at the Olympic Games.
Strong Elite Athlete field: Another strong battle for top honours is expected in the Men’s Full Marathon between champion Karan Singh and Mohit Rathore. Last year saw a sprint finish to the tape, with the experienced Karan getting the better of his Army colleague in the final stretch. Karan, the winner of the Mumbai Marathon in 2016, is in good form this year and will be looking to retain his title.
Besides Karan and Mohit, the other fancied names in the full marathon are Pankaj Dhaka, runner-up at IBVVMM 2016, Sanjith T Luwang, who placed third at the Mumbai Marathon 2017, Ashish Kumar, winner of the Jaipur Marathon 2017 and Laljee Yadav, to name a few.
The men’s half marathon will be spearheaded by Kalidas Hirave, who has a personal best timing of 1:03.27, among the fastest in the country. Kalidas clocked 1:03.46 while finishing second in the PSB Half Marathon 2018, and clocked 1:04.25 at the recent Delhi Half.
Also in the fray will be last year’s third placed athlete Shankar Man Thapa, Deepak Kumbhar, who finished third at the Mumbai Marathon 2018, Rahul Pal Kumar, A B Baliappa, Srinu Bugatha, Durga Bahadur Thapa and Govind Singh, some of the Indian finest athletes over the half marathon distance.
The women’s half marathon will be spearheaded by Monika Athare, the current National champion, who clocked 1:16.55 at the Delhi Half 2018. Monika will have to contend with the challenge from last year’s runner-up Chinta Yadav, besides fancied names like Kiran Sahdev, Ritu Pal, Jyoti Chauhan and Manju Yadav.
Race Timings: The Full Marathon will be flagged off from New Viva College, Virar W at 6.00 am, while the Half Marathon will be flagged off from Vasai West at 6.20 am. The 11Km Run will be flagged off from Vasant Nagari at 6.20 am, while the 5km Timed Run will be flagged off at 7.30 am, also from New Viva College. All the junior age category events, along with the runs for senior citizens as well as the Dhamaal Dhaav will be flagged off from New Viva College.
Special Marathon Train: Continuing in its support for the event, Western Railway has announced a special train for the Indiabulls Home Loans Vasai Virar Mayor’s Marathon, which will leave Churchgate Station at 3.00 a.m. and reach Vasai and Virar at 4.23 am and 4.31 am respectively, after stopping at all stations. Free transport will be provided to all participants from Vasai Station, Nalla Sopara Station and Virar Station to the respective start points.
Medical Partner: Riddhi Vinayak Multi Speciality Hospital will be the Medical Partner to the event, and will be manning the Medical Base Camps and the Medical Stations, along with doctors from the Virar Medical Association and will be stocked with ice packs, first aid kits, pain relief sprays as well as energy drinks. Ten fully equipped ambulances as well as doctors on motorbikes will be patrolling the race route to provide timely medical assistance in case of an emergency.
Facilities on Race Route: 30,000 litres of water will be distributed through a total of 24 stations and 15,000 litres of Enerzal through ten energy drink stations. There will also be six Orange stations and cool sponge stations on the second leg of the Full Marathon and the Half Marathon. Medical Base Camps will be set up at the finish points of the Full Marathon and Half Marathon as well as the 11KM Run. There will also be 13 medical stations along the route.
The event has the support of the Palghar District Police, who will be responsible for the Law and Order as well as traffic control on the route. They will be assisted by over 300 private security personnel.
125 officials, from all over the State, coordinated by the Palghar District Athletic Association, will b e responsible for the technical conduct of the event, while Dr. Jaywant Mane will the AFI Technical Delegate for the event. A total of 700 volunteers, among them teachers and students will be on hand to assist in the conduct of the race.