32,450 to run ‘Airtel Delhi Half Marathon 2014’ on November 23

Elite-Winner-Mutai-at-Finish-lineNew Delhi: On Sunday, November 23, 2014 less than 20 days from today, the nation’s capital will host the Airtel Delhi Half Marathon 2014 (ADHM), Delhi’s largest annual sporting celebration. On that day, the same roads that Delhites live, toil, train and drive on day after day will provide a stage for people from diverse nationalities, lifestyles, and occupations to make half marathon history! At a Meet and Greet conference today, Procam International announced a number of new initiatives and milestones for the race, making the 2014 edition a more superior running experience. Present at the event at Le Meridian, the Official Hospitality Partner, were representatives from sponsors and event partners.

Significant announcements made at the conference included an over subscription of the event across categories; the presence of a number of the world’s fastest elite international athletes, increase in overall prize money, the addition of new categories to promote Indian athletes, and bonuses for new course records in the elite and Indian category. Procam International also announced the final race timings, venue details, and the dates of the ‘Get Active Event Expo’.

In line with Procam International’s efforts to bring some the world’s most accomplished sports people to India to raise the profile of distance running as a sport, Paula Radcliffe, English long-distance runner and the current women's world record holder in the marathon will be the ‘Event Ambassador’ of Airtel Delhi Half Marathon 2014.

In yet another pointer to the manner in which the sport of distance running is engulfing the nation, registrations to ADHM 2014 received an overwhelming response and had to be closed before the cut-off date. The event is expected to witness participation from 32,450 runners from across India and different corners of the world. The Half Marathon has received 12,200 entries, the DHL corporate champions has 160 teams, while the Great Delhi Run 18,200 entries. The Senior Citizens’ Run will have 1,200 participants, and the Champions with Disability Event 220.

Speaking about the 2014 edition, Mohit Beotra, Chief Brand Officer, Bharti Airtel said, “As Delhi witnesses the final countdown to the 7th edition of ADHM 2014, Airtel salutes the incessant spirit of people who have displayed their passion and enthusiasm through the will to participate. Airtel Delhi Half Marathon has been growing by leaps and bounds over the years and the phenomenal participation is endeavoring to touch millions from all walks of life. The event registrations closing much before the stipulated date, is a testimony that ADHM has played a transformational role in bringing individuals and organizations together. We wish luck to each participant and look forward to another thrilling year of ADHM.”

Vivek B Singh, Jt. Managing Director, Procam International said, “We stand on the threshold of another thrilling edition of Airtel Delhi Half Marathon. As the city prepares to host the world’s fastest runners in one of the best road running competitions, we are glad to present to you an ADHM 2014 packed with a host of exciting additions where the fiercely competitive field will get the ideal platform to display their skill. We wish every participant the very best in their training for November 23.”

Increase in Prize Money:

The seventh edition features an increase in the overall prize money to USD 2,62,167. While Elite men and women winners will be offered USD 27,000, Indian winners stand to win INR 2,50,000. For the first time, a jackpot of USD 9000 is up for grabs for the fastest Half Marathon time in 2014 if runners break the year’s record of 58.48. The ADHM men’s record stands at 59.12 minutes, set by Ethiopia’s Atsedu Tsegay in 2013, while the women’s mark stands at 1:06.54, set by 2014 TCS New York City Marathon winner, Mary Keitany in 2009.

Additionally, as a boost to the Indian Elite field, a bonus of INR 1,00,000, is being offered to the runner who breaks the ADHM Indian course record. The men’s record is by Deepchand Saharan 1:04:00 in 2009 and the women’s record stands at 1:17:12 by Kavita Raut.

Fiercely competitive field to battle it out at ADHM:

Global Sports Communication (GSC), the event’s elite athlete coordinator has put together a highly competitive field of elite athletes for the 2014 edition.

Leading the field at the stadium’s start line on Sunday will be individuals such as 2014’s World Half Marathon Champion and former world junior cross champion Geoffrey Kamworor, Kenneth Kipkemoi and Abraham Cheroben, who will be the quickest men at the event. On the women’s side, runners including two-time world champion and defending champion Florence Kiplagat, the reigning world Half Marathon champion Gladys Cherono, and winner of several medals at the World Championships in different events, Lucy Kabuu will provide thrilling action. A number of medalists in World Half 2014 and World Championships 2013 will also be on the track apart from a cluster of talented rising stars.

Kenya’s Kiplagat is a two-time World Champion having won the 2009 IAAF World Cross Country Championships and the 2010 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships. In 2009, she ran 30.11 in a 10,000m race in the Netherlands, which is still the Kenyan national record. Noteworthy that Florence Kiplagat won her debut marathon in Berlin in 2011 in a time of 2:19:44. She returned to the German capital in 2013 to win again. This year, she shocked the world by smashing the World Record for the Half Marathon by 38 seconds and finished in 1:05:12. She also ran two strong marathons this year, finishing second in London and third in Chicago. Kiplagat won last year’s ADHM in 1:08:00 and is back to challenge it again.

Cherono is the reigning world Half Marathon champion. She won the race this year in 67:28 and left her Kenyan teammates behind. The Kenyan had a breakthrough year in 2012 winning both the 5.000m and 10.000m at the African Championships and ran the 2nd fastest time of the year over 10km road. Last year she won the silver medal at the World Championships in Moscow, finishing behind Tirunesh Dibaba. She also won the TCS World 10K Bangalore, finished second in Delhi last year, and eager to finish on top this year.

Kabuu currently holds the record for running the second fastest Half Marathon in history, 66.09, clocked at the RAK Half Marathon last year. She won her first international championships at the 2006 Commonwealth Games. After a break in 2009 and 2010, Lucy returned to competition and won the Delhi Half Marathon in 2011. In 2013, she returned to Delhi to take third place.

Kenyan Mary Wacera’s first international championship was in the 5000m at the 2006 World Junior Championships where she took the bronze medal. This year, she has already won the World’s Best 10K, beating Cherono, the Bloomsday 12K and the Utica Boilermaker 15K. On the Half Marathon side, she won a silver medal at the World Half Marathon Championships in Copenhagen with a sizzling 67:43 performance.
Among many others athletes who are returning to Delhi, all eyes will be on Kiplagat, Cherono and Kabuu who will look at beating the other and improving last year’s performance at ADHM.

The exciting men’s field includes 14 athletes who have run the Half Marathon just below 61.00 on either track or road and pose a strong challenge to the existing course record. Leading the Men Elite Athletes will be the 21-year-old Cheroben from Kenya, who raced to one of the fastest Half Marathon times in history, clocking 58:48 at the Valencia Half Marathon. Surprisingly, Cheroben is relatively new to the field, started running internationally a few years ago, and made a huge step forward in 2014. In addition to the fastest run, he ran a quick 59:14 in the Berlin Half Marathon this year and produced the fourth fastest time ever run in the 25K in Berlin.

Joining him will be Kamworor, last year’s runner up. The 2014 World Half Marathon Champion and former world junior cross champion ran the fastest Half Marathons of 2013 and 2014. His personal best of 58:54, set in RAK last year, ranked him number one on the IAAF top lists. He also holds the number one position this year after his 59:08 in Copenhagen. Kamwaror will come to India for the fifth time. He won the TCS World 10K in 2012 running under the Kipsang surname, repeating it in 2014, and was runner-up in ADHM 2011 and 2013.

Kamworor will face stiff competition from Stephen Kibet, one of the few athletes with a sub 59:00 (58:54 in 2011) personal best. He was placed fifth at the World Half Marathon Championships in 2012. This fall, Stephen has already run two strong Half Marathons, finishing 2nd in Luanda and 1st in Lisbon.
Another promising name is Jonathan Maiyo, who has impressive personal bests of 59:02 for half and 2:04:56 for the full marathon. After a difficult year in 2013, Maiyo is on his way back after finishing 1st in Zwolle Half Marathon and 2nd in Eindhoven Marathon.

Other top athletes such as debutant Kinde Atanaw, who will be visiting India for the second time after his third place in Bangalore in 2013, and Kenneth Kipkemoi, who finished fourth in Delhi last year will ensure edge of the seat action. Out of 10 Half Marathons Kipkemoi has run four times below the one-hour mark.

Elite Distance Running Program:

This year’s event will include new categories of races to promote Indian Athletes representing different state athletic associations selected from over 1000 participants at various events organized by the Sports Authority of India (SAI). The objective behind introducing this initiative is to recognize, promote and improve Indian talent. Approximately 200 athletes from various parts of India will run 10K, 5K and 3K races according to their age. Sixty of the fastest athletes will attend a 45-day training camp in India under the guidance of foreign coaches. At the end of the program, approximate 6-8 of the best athletes will travel abroad for further training.

DHL Corporate Champions:

The DHL Corporate Champions is gaining tremendous popularity among organizations and is being viewed as a highly effective team building exercise for employees. This year, the run has received overwhelming participation from many of the leading corporate houses across the city and country. The total number of teams registered is 181 with 543 participants, a whopping 158% increase compared to last year. The challenge will have representation from some of the biggest corporate houses in the country including Bharti Airtel, IBM India, Infosys Limited, Indian Oil Corporation Limited, Sony India Pvt. Limited, Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Communications Ltd. among others.

RS Subramanian, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, India, DHL Express said, We are delighted to announce that this year we will have 181 corporate teams participating in the DHL Corporate Champions category. We introduced this category for corporates last year, and in one year it has become the fastest growing category of the marathon. Also as the Official Logistics Partners of the road race, we wish all the runners our very best and hope they have a great running experience this year too.”

Cigna TTK Treadmillion Challenge 2014:

This year’s Cigna TTK Treadmillion Challenge 2014 - brought to Delhi by Radio Mirchi in association with Jabong, Volini & DHL - a unique build-up to ADHM, created the perfect platform for the capital’s health conscious to realize that it’s never too late to be part of the fitness movement. Being held at 30 touch points across corporate houses, Resident Welfare Associations, malls, and joggers parks in various zones reaching almost 2 lac people with active participation from over 5,000 people making it one of Delhi NCR’s largest activation. The challenge will witness one winner from each touch point moving forward to battle it out. Winners will face counterparts from other touch points of similar nature at the Get Active Expo on November 16 in the mega final. Winners will take home attractive prizes worth INR 5,00,000.

Get Active Expo is organised and marketed by Radio Mirchi Activations as a one-stop destination for enthusiasts of health, fitness and wellbeing to come together under one roof. The Expo will be organized a week ahead for the convenience of the runners to collect their respective numbers. For the first time the expo will be organized at the Weightlifting Auditorium, Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium Complex (Entry from Gate No.20), New Delhi 11003 from November 14th – 16th 2014.

Confirmed participants from Delhi/NCR region can collect their running numbers along with goodie bags in between 11.00 am to 7.00 pm on November 14th - 15th and between 09.30 am and 1.30 pm on November 16 from Gate No.17, behind Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.

Outstation participants can collect their running numbers and goodie bags on November 22 between 11.00 am and 5.00 pm at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium through Gate No. 20.

All the three days of the expo will see a host of activities like the runners meet and other interactive stalls of partners like Airtel, Cigna TTK, Reebok, Jabong, Volini Spray, TUI India, Star Sports, Enerzal and India Cares. In addition to this, leading sports brands like Nike, Adidas, Skechers, Puma, Asics have displayed a wide array of products for the benefit of participants. Apart from them Nice Gel, UNO Coin and Paras will also be present.

The expo will give participants ample time to study in detail, race day instructions, familiarize themselves with security arrangements, traffic restrictions, road closures and other arrangements that will come into force on Race Day.

India Cares, the event’s official philanthropy partner will also sell a limited number of running bibs at the expo, with the proceeds going towards charity.

The Max Your Run Challenge:

With an aim to encourage women participants, this exciting challenge has been initiated by Max Healthcare, the events Medical Partner and is open to women participants of the Half Marathon category. Take up this challenge and post a better time in the 2014 edition compared to 2013. You could be one among seven lucky winners and win premium membership at a Max Healthcare centre with the ‘Max Healthcare HealthyHer Card’, courtesy Max Healthcare.

Final start times:

The Half Marathon for Elite men will start at 6.40 am, followed by the Half Marathon for Elite women at 6.50 am. The new 10K, 5K and 3K for the athletes of the Elite Distance Running Program will be flagged off at 6:55, 6:56 and 6:57 am respectively. The DHL Corporate Champions race will start at 7.00 am, followed by the Amateur Marathon at 7:05 a.m. with staggered starts basis sections runners are confirmed in.

These will be followed by the Champions with Disability at 7.30 am, the Senior Citizens’ Run at 8.00 am and the Great Delhi Run at 9.25 am. All flag offs will be from Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. Gate 1 will serve as the Finish Area for all categories apart from the Champions With Disability and the Senior Citizens’ Run, which will conclude at Gate 2. The 10K, 5K and 3K for the athletes of the Elite Distance Running Program will finish at 10, 5 and 3km points on route.