Club road and other prominent roads from The western part of the city took an orange look as 1500 runners and athletes sporting an orange T shirt took part in the 1st ever Half Marathon conducted in Belagavi. Organised by Lakeview group of hospitals and supported by IDS Technologies Pvt Ltd as title sponsors, the running went through beautiful Hanuman nagar area, Cantonment and Commando training areas to the delight of runners who had come from Goa, Maharashtra and various cities across the nation.
C Ped ground, the venue of the event started getting crowded as scores of athletes and runners commenced arriving from 5.30 am onwards. The marathon commenced at around 6 am Sunday morning and the runs were flagged off by Major General Alok Kacker of J L Wing and Amarnath Reddy, SP, ACB.
The event took a more sophisticated look as about 180 runners belonging to MLIRC and Junior Leaders wing of the Indian army comprising of officers, commandos and other ranks also participated in a big way with 180 runners in 10k and 21k categories. The army participation was led by Station Commandant of MLIRC, Brig Govind Kalwad who ran 21km.
Runners from all walks of life comprising of teachers, professors, engineers, doctors, government officers took part in the marathon. About 100 students and teachers of government school also participated.
City Corporation of Belagavi joined hands as co hosts to create awareness about cleanliness while E Rotary club highlighted End Polio campaign through this event. Volunteers from various organisations in the city were seen providing water, biscuits to the participants at designated places along the marathon route.
Prizes were given away in 18 prize categories- 5k, 10k, 21k in different age categories and male and female. Brand Ambassadors Dr. Anand Patil came all the way from Mumbai . Anand Patil, the only athlete from India after having competed in Uthe SA in the gruelling marathon and Iron Man events during last one month hails from Belagavi and congratulated people of the city for holding the half marathon successfully. He hailed this initiative as a landmark event and hoped it will happen every year so that Belagavi citizens will get fitter.
Mayura Shivalkar and Sheetal Kolhapure, brand ambassadors of the event also took part in the event.
This event has also supported many social initiatives like the runners contributed Rs 50,000 to Rajalakshmi Children Foundation to help in Health promotion in Government schools. Prizes were distributed by the chief guest Maj Gen Alok Kacker
Pacers and brand ambassadors were facilitated by Dr Kirti Mane, Dr Anil Patil, Dr Pradeep Vagarali and Dr Prabhu Halkati of Lakeview. Managing Director of IDS Technoligies private Ltd Umesh Mukkannavar and Sharad Mukkannavar were also felicitated on the occasion. Mr Venkatraman from YouTooCanRun managed the race along with officials from Belagavi District Athletic Association. Dr Arpita Nadgouda from Hubballi compered.
A para athlete from Kolhapur also took part in the marathon while a shepherd from Belagavi Sanju Sambrekar and his specially abled son Dharmu Sambrekar took part in the 21 kms and 5 kms marathons events respectively.