NEW DELHI: India’s 3000m steeplechase national record holder Avinash Sable smashed the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon 2020 event record as well on Sunday. The Olympic-bound athlete raced to the first position in the Indian elite men’s category in 1:00:30, beating the previous national record of 1:03.46 held by Kalidas Nirave. In addition to the prize money of Rs 3.5 lakh, Avinash will also receive an event record bonus of Rs 1 lakh.
“It’s great to break the national record. I have not competed in any tournament for a year and I have been only practicing, so I wanted to compete in an event. ADHM has certainly helped me to prepare for the Olympics next year. Coming into the race, I wanted to break the national record and stay as close as possible to the international runners during the race. I am happy I was able to do that,” said Sable.
The defending champion Srinu Bugatha finished second with a timing of 1:04:16, while Durga Bahadur took third place with a timing of 1:04:19 in the Indian elite men’s category.
“I incurred an injury while training in the last few months, so I didn’t have much time to prepare for ADHM. I was looking to record a timing of 1:03:00, but that didn’t happen, however, I am happy for Avinash. All in all, the course was great today and the weather was also nice, which aided us to perform well,” said Bugatha.
Bahadur gave credit to Bugatha for a podium finish in the Indian elite men’s category. “Running alongside Srinu for the most part of the race helped me to get a good position today. I had prepared for this event in Ooty along with Avinash Sable,” said Durga Bahadur.
PARUL CHAUDHARY clinched the first position with a timing of 01:12:18 in the Indian elite women’s category, while Sanjivani Jadhav (01:13:00) and Komal Jagadale (01:14:04) finished second and third respectively.
“I wanted to beat my own best timing and I am happy I have done that here. I didn’t have any specific strategy in mind, I just wanted to beat my personal best. Practicing in the same group as Avinash Sable has been a huge motivating factor for me to work harder during training,” said Parul Chaudhary.
Jadhav expressed that she is happy about achieving her target, “I had prepared well for this event and it feels great to do well at ADHM. I am happy that I have performed according to my target.”
The third-placed Jagadale enjoyed the course and weather in the capital city. “I am very happy that I have improved my timing. The weather and the course are really good in Delhi,” said Komal Jagadale.
India runs with ADHM: Around 13,500 people from around the world took part in ADHM 2020, across three categories – Half Marathon (21.097 km), Open 10K (10 km) and Great Delhi Run (5 km) – from their own respective locations.
While the Elite runners ran from the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, thousands from across the globe joined them via the exclusive Airtel Delhi Half Marathon Mobile App.
Results: Indian top men: 1. AVINASH SABLE 01:00:30; 2. SRINU BUGATHA 01:04:16; 3. DURGA BAHADUR BUDHA 01:04:19; 4. ABHISHEK PAL 01:04:37; 5. TIRTHA PUN 01:04:53; 6. BELIAPPA A B 01:04:58; 7. DINESH KUMAR 01:05:44; 8. MAN SINGH 01:07:13; 9. KISAN NARSHI TADVI 01:07:15; 10. SHER SINGH 01:07:16.
Top women: 1. PARUL CHAUDHARY 01:12:18; 2. SANJIVANI JADHAV 01:13:00; 3. KOMAL JAGADALE 01:14:04; 4. PHOOLAN PAL 01:17:25; 5. SONIKA 01:17:26; 6. SEEMA 01:17:32; 7. ARATI PATIL 01:19:39; 8. RIMA PATEL 01:20:40; 9. PRITI LAMBA 01:20:48; 10. CHINTA YADAV 01:23:35.