Nitender, Kavita win Kolkata 25K titles

Kolkata, Dec 28 (IANS) Nitender Singh Rawat and Kavita Raut emerged winners in the inaugural Tata Steel Kolkata (TSK) 25K run here Sunday.

Nitender clocked an hour and 19.39 minutes to win his first title here while Kavita stopped the clock at an hour and 33.39 minutes to top the podium in the women’s category.

Nitender had a tough field with Elam Singh and Soji Mathew as fellow runners. The trio ran together till the 19km mark with Nitender and Elam taking the lead ahead of Soji.
Nitender then broke away towards the final 500m to take the gold and Rs.250,000. Elam Singh, who regularly practices at the Fort Williams here, failed to win the title by eight seconds while Soji claimed third by completing the race in an hour and 20.01 minutes.

On winning the inaugural edition, Nitender said, “This is the first time I am participating in the 25K. Earlier, I had participated in the 21K, so this experience was memorable. My coach Surinder Singh is my role model, mentor and guide, and I would like to follow in his footsteps.”
“Next year I will be making the switch to the full marathon category and will prepare myself for the full race in the Mumbai Marathon 2016 with an eye for the 2016 Olympics that year,” he said.

The women’s race witnessed yet another tough field with Kavita Raut and Sudha both poised favourably to win the debut race.
Kavita and Sudha stayed together up until 24km mark. With only 400 metres to go, Kavita Raut out-sprinted Sudha to take the first position with Sudha took the second spot, finishing her race in an hour and 33:49 minutes. Manisha Salunkhe took the third place with a timing of an hour and 35:20 minutes.

Kavita Raut said, “I was very impressed with the arrangements and credit goes to the organisers. Today’s race helped me prepare for the 2016 Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon.”

A total of 6,588 runners participated in the event across different categories, including 857 in the 25K, 1,515 in the Open 10K, 3,534 in the Ananda Run, 2,622 in the Senior Citizens section, and 419 in Champions with Disability.