18 FEBRUARY KATHMANDU – The Fifth Edition of the Kantipur Half marathon is scheduled to organized on February 19th is all ready to go and Top Nepali athletes Anish Thapa Magar and Kanchi Maya Koju will have tough challenge to defend their titles.
The fifth edition of the race, organised by Kantipur Publications to mark its 22nd anniversary, will start from near the Kantipur Complex en route to Koteshwor, Sallaghari, Surya Binayak, Jagati and back to the staring point. Defending men’s half marathon champion Thapa Magar will be up against the likes of top athletes Hari Kumar Rimal, Gopi Chand Parki, Rajan Khatri, and Bhumi Rai. The three-time champions Koju will be a firm favourite to retain the title but Bishwo Rupa Budha can give her a tough time. “Budha looks a firm challenge to Koju,” said senior athletics coach and race director Sushil Narsingha Rana.
More than two thousand participants have registered in three different categories for the event: half marathon, 3km wheel chair race and 5km corporate-media run. In all, 1,400 men and 250 women have registered their names to compete in the 21.1km half marathon this year. Additionally, 500 have registered for Corporate-Media race and 30 others for the wheelchair race. “All top athletes of the country are competing in the marathon and it will be interesting to see who will come out the winner,” added Rana.
The half marathon winners in both men’s and women’s categories will take home Rs 50,000 each, while runners-up will receive Rs 30,000 each. Athletes finishing third in half marathon will receive Rs 20,000 each. Top six runners are assured of cash prizes.
Top three winners in both Corporate-Media and Wheel Chair races will get Rs 10,000, Rs 5,000 and Rs 3,000 each. Kantipur Publications will also hand over Rs 25,000 to athlete who sets a new course record in the half marathon. Thapa Magar holds the men’s half marathon course record of 1:07:47 while Koju holds the record in women’s category at 1:24:47.