Amateur athlete Shrestha sets ambitious targetDespite having no prior experience of running over the distance, the 31-year-old is setting an ambitious target of completing the race inside two-hour mark.
Yubaraj Shrestha, an amateur runner, is making a competitive athletics debut by participating in the Kantipur Half Marathon on May 25.
Despite having no prior experience of running over the distance, the 31-year-old is setting an ambitious target of completing the race inside two-hour mark. For an amateur who is relying on regular morning jogging as preparations for the 21.1km run, the task ahead is really tough. “I haven’t run in any competitive race since local level races some 17-18 years ago in Ramechhap yet I am willing to take it as a challenge,” said Shrestha. “I will
look for a podium finish as any other participants but more realistically I hope to complete the race inside two hours,” he said.
He is partly taking the Kantipur Half Marathon as a platform to prepare himself for next year’s Everest Marathon. “I am really motivated by trail runner Mira Rai, the former CPN Maoist combatant, who earned global fame in ultra races,” he said. He lauded the efforts of organisers, The Kantipur Publications, for making the race meaningful by promoting anti-pollution drive. “The race will help spread the anti-pollution message more forcefully than any other means.”
Shrestha believes apathy from concerned authorities are largely to blame for the current state of pollution in Kathmandu. “But its now time that every citizen take it as their own individual problem and help contribute in minimising it in anyway possible,” said Shrestha.
Apart from half marathon in men’s and women’ s categories, the event also include 5km race for corporate and media along with 5km wheelchair competition. APF club athlete Kanchi Maya Koju is the most decorated
athletes of the annual meet winning the women’s half marathon title five times. Armyman Hari Kumar Rimal have won the men’s half marathon four times.