Wed, Oct 26, 2016 | updated 04:46 PM IST

Tura gears up for first-ever timed half marathon

Updated: Oct 05, 2016 08:16 IST

Tura (Meghalaya) [India], Oct. 5 (ANI): In the backdrop of the picturesque hills of Meghalaya's Tura peak, the much talked about first-ever timed half marathon will begin here on December 4.

The second edition of the half marathon titled 'Turathon' promises to promote sports and showcase the scenic beauty and culture of the Garo Hills.

Overwhelmed by the 1000 plus participation from across the state last year, the Tura Runners Club (TRC) has decided to upscale the event with the use of latest technology and gadgets to attract runners from across the country and globe.

The TRC has this year decided to launch an aggressive promotional campaign to attract as many participants as possible.

As part of its promotion, the club inaugurated its website earlier on Sunday evening.

The organisers are also roping in a celebrity to promote the Turathon national and internationally.

However, it has not yet been disclosed whether the celebrity will be a sports icon or from the film fraternity.

"The online registration has begun and interested participants can visit the site to take part in the half marathon," said TRC president Dikki D. Shira.

He said that Evocrete CCL, an infrastructure development company, has partnered with the TRC to present the Turathon 2016 in a more grandeur manner as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme.

Evocrete CCL, which promotes environment friendly German technology to build roads, is presently building several important and strategic roads across the state.

The organisers are expecting nearly 1,500 runners, mostly amateurs.

"We are confident that we will attract runners from different parts of the north-east and rest of the country. We have partnered with several runners club of the region to achieve our objective. We have also listed our event in the international marathon calendar," said Shira.

Shira further said the event's USP is that the Garo Hills is in a festive mood during that time of the year.

"This will give an opportunity for the travellers to take part in the event and experience the culture at its best in the Garo Hills," he said.

The Evocrete CCL Turathon 2016 will have two categories: 21 km half marathon and seven km run for peace.

The prize money in both categories will be around Rs. 2.90 lakh.

"We want to showcase the tourism potential of the Garo Hills through this event. We believe that sports can attract travellers," said Gautam Barman, the media coordinator and advisor of TRC.

Barman informed that the timing chip will be used in the bibs for recording timing and SMS alerts will be available to all participants on completion of the race.

"The timing certificate can be downloaded from the website within 30 days of the race," he added.

The other attraction of this event will be a giant LCD display which will give online status of the race.

"This is going to be the first-timed event marathon in the Garo Hills and the second after the Sohra Marathon. We have already received responses from Assam and Nagaland and even international runners, who are keen to take part in the event," said Barman.

Registration will close on November 7. The registered participants will have to collect their bib numbers from November 29 from the venue.

Barman said the half marathon would be more than just a sporting event. It will have several attractions to enthral participants as well as the audience.

The race will begin from the Chandmari playground, pass through Danakgre and end up back at Chandmari.

The organisers would also raise the issue of health awareness and the benefits of running during the event. (ANI)