Rio Olympian Nitendra Singh Rawat and Jyoti Gawate clinched the men's and women's crowns in the Ageas Federal Life Insurance New Delhi Marathon on Sunday.
Six men elite runners crossed the entry standard prescribed by the Athletics Federation of India for the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games later this year. Rawat led the men's race on a hot morning, winning the full marathon title with an impressive timing of 2:16.05. Anish Thapa Magar (2:16.41) and Anil Kumar Singh (2:16.47) claimed the first and second runner-up positions in what turned out to be an intense battle for supremacy.
Gawate claimed the top honour in the women's full marathon. Her 3:01.20 was, however, below the AFI entry standard for the two multi-sport events later this year. Nupur Singh (3:16.03) and Disket Dolma (3:22.06) grabbed the other two places on the podium. The AFI entry standards for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games in July-August is 2:18:40 for men and 2:38:19 for women. The corresponding entry standards for the Asian Games in September are 2:18:48 and 2:39.28 respectively.
Ashish Kumar (2:17.04), AB Belliappa (2:17.09) and Kalidas Laxman Hirave (2:18.14) were the other three men who went under the AFI entry standard. "The marathon was exciting with the runners giving it their everything," Karthik Raman, Chief Marketing Officer Ageas Federal Life Insurance, said. Organised by NEB Sports, the marathon is recognised as a National Marathon Championship by the AFI.
In all, 13,000 runners took part in the event, with the half marathon drawing over 6,500 and the 10K over 2,000. The full marathon too saw close to 2,500 participants, making it the year's first big run. Rupan Debnath won the men's half-marathon in 1:12.02, while Tashi Ladol clinched the corresponding women's race in 1:27.48. Abhishek Choudhary grabbed the men's 10K title with a time of 0:32.03 while Ashvini Jadhav claimed the corresponding women's race, clocking 0:39.22.
Full Marathon: Men: 1. Nitendra Rawat (2:16.05); 2. Anish Thapa Magar (2:16.41), 3. Anil Singh (2:16.47) Women: 1. Jyoti Gawate (3:01.20); 2. Nupur Singh (3:16.03); 3. Aradhana Reddy (3:19.34)
Half-Marathon: Men 1. Rupan Debnath (1:12.02); 2. Amit Khanduri (1:12.19); 3. Anil Jindal (1:12.33) Women: 1. Tashi Ladol (1:27.48); 2. Seema Yadav (1:28.54); 3. Sara Bissell (1:35.29).