Gopi, Monika win in IDBI New Delhi Marathon

New Delhi, Feb 26: T. Gopi and Monika Athare won the second edition of IDBI Federal Life Insurance New Delhi Marathon here on Sunday in Delhi, finishing in 2:15:37 hours and 2:39:08 hours, respectively.

It was a tough competition amongst the elite male athletes as all three winners were eyeing qualification for the World Championship. Gopi was followed by Bahadur Singh Dhoni (2:16:09) and Sanjit Luwang (2:17:20).

Gopi, from Pune’s Army Sports Institute, said: “I am happy on winning the title. Dhoni and myself were running together from start till the 25K mark. This is my first marathon in 2017, where I grabbed the title.”

When asked about his future plans he said: “I will be running for Asian Championship in June and also in London Marathon.”

In the women’s category, Monika from shik completed the race in 2:39:08 hours to finish above Jyoti Gawate (2:53:48) and Ranjan Kumari (3:08:04).

In the half marathon, G. Lakshaman and Man Singh both ran together till the 18-km mark. In the last 3 km, G. Lakshaman broke away aiming for the finish line and won the title with a time of 1:04:29 hour. It was a tough competition between the top three — Man Singh followed just 10 seconds behind whilst Olympian Kheta Ram finished third with 1:06:15 on the clock.

Manju Yadav won the women’s half marathon by completing the race in 1:21:02. When asked about the race, she said: “The weather and route were comfortable which helped me to a great extent in winning the title.”

On her future plans, she said: “I am planning to improve my timing in the upcoming marathon.”

Arpita Saini, second position holder finished the race in 1:25:34 and she was followed by Neetu Singhin 1:27:11.

Face of the event, Sachin Tendulkar, said: “The positive thing about having this marathon is getting everyone more engaged, more involved and lead a better healthy lifestyle. There is so much enthusiasm among the people of Delhi who participated.

“There were some special kids who were taking part on wheelchair. Hats off to their commitment and their grit. They were looking to break their own records and that is really inspiring. In spite of these huge challenges, they were willing to go out and show the spirit. This is something for all of us to learn.” IANS