Even though the route will be one, the reasons for Mumbaiites to run on Sunday morning will be different. Some will run to set a record, others will do so to test their fitness level, while a few others will run to send out a message.
The 12th edition of Mumbai Marathon, the city’s most-awaited annual sporting event, has seen a remarkable 40,485 registrations under all seven categories — full marathon, half marathon, corporate champions, police cup, dream run, senior citizens’ run and champions with disability.
While Bollywood actor John Abraham has retained his position as the event’s brand ambassador, France’s Marion Bartoli, winner of the 2013 Wimbledon tennis championships singles in women’s category, has been chosen as the international face this year.
“Historically, India has not been associated with running, but ever since the event began twelve years ago, it has completely taken running to the next level. Today, we are among the top ten marathons in the world. We have more than 4,000 runners in the full marathon, which is truly remarkable,” said Daniel Mobley, organiser of the event and regional head, corporate Affairs - India & South Asia, Standard Chartered.
In the half marathon, 1,000 running places have been reserved exclusively for non-timed women applicants. Around 290 people are set to participate in the champions with disability category. “I believe that the society’s attitude towards the differently-abled will change only if people like us participate in public events and make ourselves visible. Such marathons are ideal platforms,” said Sunita Sancheti, a wheelchair event participant.
The city police have beefed up security to manage traffic and any untoward situation.
“To assist motorists, public, ambulances and other emergency vehicles, information booths will be installed at various junctions to guide them,” said Quaiser Khalid, additional commissioner of police, traffic.