Maharjan bags veterans’ title at Sydney Marathon
Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 17, 2012
HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
The 53-year-old Maharjan finished the 42.195km distance in two hours 58 minutes and 39 seconds to come first in his age-group category, which was completed by 146 runners. He also finished 47th overall among the 2,896 athletes who completed the race and 43rd among the male.
Maharjan completed the first 21km in one hour 28 minutes and another half in one hour 30 minutes.
Maharjan, who has been participating in international marathons since 2002, had won the 5,000m gold in the Malaysian Open Masters Athletics Championship in 2003 and 10,000m title in the Asian Masters Athletics Championship in 2010, also in Malaysia.
Maharjan, who was training regularly under athletics chief coach Sushil Narsingh Rana and legendary marathoner Baikuntha Manandhar before leaving for Australia, was hopeful of podium finish in the marathon this time around. His personal best timing in marathon was 2:51:33 set during the New York City Marathon in 2011.
Coach Rana termed the achievement as historic for Nepal. “I was expecting the result for him as I had trained him in such a way that he could finish the race within two hours and 50 minutes,” said Rana.
“But he suffered from Tonsillitis before leaving to Australia and I had a fear that he might not be able to win medal,” he added. “It is a great achievement as he could win the medal despite not finishing the distance in expected time,” said Rana.