Last Updated: February 15, 2023, 17:08 IST
Ram Baboo broke his own record to set a new national record in 35km race walk (IANS)
Ram Baboo and Manju Rani broke national records in 35km Race Walk, missed the World Athletics Championships qualifying mark
Ram Baboo and Manju Rani rewrote the men’s and women’s 35km national records en route to winning gold medals on the concluding day of the National Race Walking Championships here on Wednesday.
The 23-year-old Manju, representing Punjab, became the first Indian woman to clock sub-3 hour in 35km race walk event, winning in 2:57.54s, as she broke the earlier national record of 3:00.04s set last year by Ramandeep Kaur.
Baboo of Uttar Pradesh, on the other hand, improved his own national mark of 2:36.34s by nearly five minutes to 2:32.36s.
However, they failed to match the World Athletics Championships qualifying standards of 2:29.40s (men) and 2:51.30s (women).
The 35km race walk is a very new event introduced in India only in 2021 in the wake of World Athletics’ decision to do away with the 50km event after the Tokyo Olympics.
ALSO READ|Mercedes Unveil First Look of All Black W14 Car for F1 2023 Season, See Pics
For Manju, it was the first win in five starts since preferring the 35km event in September 2021.
“I have worked very hard for this and I am happy that I could break the national record today. I will train harder and improve gradually to win laurels for the country,” Manju said.
Seeking a hat-trick of titles after winning the National Games in Gandhinagar and the National Open Athletics Championships in Bengaluru in October last, Uttarakhand’s Payal was unable to stay abreast of Manju and finished the race a shade outside her personal best to take the silver medal with a timing of 3:05.43s.
Bandana Patel of Uttar Pradesh took the bronze with a personal best time of 3:11.35s.
Defending champion Ramandeep finished fifth with a below par timing of 3:20.25s.
ALSO READ| Champions League: Tactical Blunders From Christophe Galtier as PSG Serve First Round to Bayern Munich on a Platter
In the men’s 35km event, a determined Baboo regained the crown that he had ceded to Juned Khan in April last year.
The 23-year-old, thus, consolidated his position as the country’s pre-eminent 35km race walker, having won back-to-back titles in the National Games in Gandhinagar and the National Open Athletics Championships in Bengaluru in October last year.
“I had the confidence in my ability and knew that I had trained right for the event. I am delighted that the course here encourages us to aim for improvement,” Baboo said.
Defending champion Juned improved his personal best by four minutes but found Baboo a tough nut to crack and had to be satisfied with the silver medal this time. He clocked 2:36.04s.
The vastly experienced Chandan Singh also lowered his personal best by over four minutes to 2:36.55s but had to content with a fourth successive bronze medal in the national-level 35km events.
ALSO READ| Belgian Goalkeeper Arne Espeel Dies Moments After Saving Penalty
Men’s 35km: 1. Ram Baboo (Uttar Pradesh) 2:31.36s (New National Record); 2. Juned Khand (Haryana) 2:36.04s; 3. Chandan Singh (Uttarakhand) 2:36.55s.
Women’s 35km: 1. Manju Rani (Punjab) 2:57.54s (New National Record); 2. Payal (Uttarakhand) 3:05.43s; 3. Bandana Patel (Uttar Pradesh) 3:11.35s.
Read all the Latest Sports News here
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)
Leave a Reply