Running is best way to stay fit: Boris Becker in Kolkata
Flagging off the unique distance running event, India’s premier Tata Steel Kolkata 25K, along with former India cricket captain Sourav Ganguly, he said: “Today, India is witnessing a running revolution. I have always believed that running is the best way to stay fit."
"It is also the easiest way to lead a healthy life. I am just thrilled to be in this city and it was great to see the enthusiasm displayed by these runners to be a part of this running movement,” said Becker.
Sourav Ganguly echoing the tennis icon said "running is a way of life."
"I ran a lot when I did sports actively. It is a healthiest way of life. I am so amazed to see so many come out in such numbers. I am associated with the TSK 25K for the last four months and and I am so pleased to see that they have done such a good job,” said Ganguly.
West Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi, Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Arup Biswas, Minister of Sports Lakshmi Ratan Shukla and Prasun Mukherjee, President, Bengal Athletic Association besides Tollywood actress Rituparna Sengupta were present at the event.
A new course record was set by G Lakshmanan at the third edition of TATA Steel 25K, event as 10,089 participants came out on Sunday to turn the historic Red Road into a veritable track on a nippy winter morning.
The top three men all broke the course record set by Nitinder Singh Rawat in the first edition with a timing of 1.19:39 hr. G Lakshmanan came first with a timing of 1.17:16 hr, followed Srinu Bugata 1.17:18 hr and Baliappa A B 1.17:24 hr.
However, the woman’s record set by Sudha Singh 1.27:31 hr stands. Monica Athare came first with the timing of 1.34:15hr, followed by Jyoti Gawte 1.35:34 hr and Monika Raut 1.35:37 hr.
In fact, the top five men better the record set by Rawat two years back. Man Singh finished on 1.18:40 hr, while Abhishek Pal finished on 1.18:42 hr.
The top Indian athletes vied for the prize purse of Rs 21,21,000. The first prize for both men and women is Rs 2,50,000 each, while the second and third for both are of Rs 1,75,000 and Rs 1,00,000 each. In addition, G Lakshmanan will also take a course record bonus of Rs 50,000.