Arvind Kumar Yadav from Uttar Pradesh has been competing in the domestic road-race circuit for the past four years. The former track-runner switched to road racing to earn valuable money and become a force in marathon events.
Sunday in the Capital was yet another productive day in his running career as he emerged victorious in the men's category of the Mawana Indian Open Marathon, and took home a winner's cheque of Rs 2.50 lakh.
The money, said Arvind, would help him further fuel his passion for running "hard and fast". "My aim is to rise above others in the country. Hence, I need more money to train hard for gruelling events," said Arvind, whose aim is to crack the 2 hrs 15 minute barrier in marathon by the end of this year.
Raising the bar, according to the runner who hails from a village in Faizabad (UP), would not only enhance his racing profile, but also change the face of marathon running. “Breaking the barrier isn't easy, but I want to be a pioneer,” he said.
Among the women runners, international Kiran Tewari raced the 21km event with measured strides to reach home first. She said after the race that Sunday's event had helped her evaluate her endurance. “A good result in half marathon has added to my confidence to do better in track events too,” Tewari said.