Seven world-class runners for La Ultra marathon

July 31st, 2011 - 7:42 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 31 (IANS) The second edition of the La Ultra marathon will see seven top international runners covering a distance of 220 km along the challenging Leh-Manali terrain.

The marathon, scheduled Aug 11-14, will require high endurance levels from the athletes as they will have to run the distance in 60 hours with the altitude getting as high as 18,000 feet in some parts.

The marathon will begin from Khardungla Pass (18,380 ft) with the runners going down to Leh in the middle before going up again to finish at Sangtha.

The field includes former American boxer in Ray Sanchez, a final year law student Samantha Gash from Australia and Catherine Todd, who is a professor in UAE. The other Ultra runners competing are America’s Molly Sheridian, the UK’s Sharon Gayter, Australia’s Jason Rita and New Zealander Lisa Samati, who has already left for Leh to acclimatise in the low-oxygen surroundings.

Rajat Chauhan, founder of La Ultra, made the local enthusiasts rub shoulders with the elite athletes in a free run organised here Sunday.

“We are only trying to get people running a healthy lifestyle. There is no prize money here unlike the conventional marathons,” Chauhan, who is a doctor by profession, told IANS.

The runners who have come from different parts of the world had a common thing to say when asked about their love for running.

“This can’t be our full time thing. But we are passionate about running and there can’t be a better way for travelling around the world.”

An ultra marathon could be any event in which the distance is more than 42 km as adopted in the traditional marathon.

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