Kids revel in joy of running in Salwan marathon

November 16th, 2008 - 8:19 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 16 (IANS) It was a day out for 30,000 kids from all over the country who ran with verve and enthusiasm at the 14th edition of Salwan marathon at Army Equestrian Centre here Sunday morning.The high point of the marathon was the participation of around 700 blind students who with their volunteers ran 3 km against all odds on the expansive army ground. The winners swelled in pride while those who could not make it were happy to chip in with the promise of doing better next year.

For 21-year-old Vijender Yadav, who took part for the second consecutive year, it is an event that gives him an emotional high and confidence.

“It was my second time and I find it very inspiring. Even though it was a little chilly in the morning, I ran and completed the whole stretch. In fact my volunteer got tired but I did not,” said Vijender, who is in the second year of a B.A. programme and dreams of becoming an IAS officer.

In the girls’s special race, Reena Rawat (19:54:18 seconds) came first followed by Shabnam (22:10:15) and Roshni (24:08). In boys, Ramkaran (13:25), Krishnakant (14:10) and Prateek (14:39) took the top three places.

There was an encouraging turnout in the other three categories where children from various schools participated zealously even as a band played in the background to cheer up the young athletes.

Arpita (13:22), Ankita (13:45) and Meenakshi (14:04) notched the top three positions in the Under-14 girls category.

The organisers were strict this time and the prize distribution ceremony was held up for a while after results in the boy’s under-14 category were subjected to age verification.

In the under-16 category girls, Seema (19:02) came first while Pooja (21:06) and Yogita (21:34) contended with second and third positions. In the boys section, Rahul (15:23:53) emerged the winner followed by Gangaram (15:26) and Karan (15:27).

In the u-18 category boys, Devendra (25:27) walked away with top honours while Sumit(25:31) and Jitendra Pal (25:49) came second and third, respectively. Seema (30:00), Rekha (30:42), Pushpa (31:00) won among girls.

It was only past noon that the event came to a close. The tears shed by the pain of losing were soon evaporated by a lively bhangra performance and magic show as the young athletes, while on their return home, bantered about the hours passed by.

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