Whenever the 101-year-old Mann Kaur sets foot on the athletics track, the aim is to get better. The world’s fastest centenarian broke her world record to clinch gold in 100m at the World Masters Games -- considered the Olympics for veterans --- in Auckland, New Zealand, on Monday.
Improving on her world record by seven seconds in the 100-plus category, the great grand mom completed the race in 1 minute and 14 seconds. (PHOTOS)
Mann Kaur made headlines last year when she become the world’s fastest centenarian by clinching gold in 100m at the American Masters Games in Vancouver with a time of 1 minute 21 seconds.
“We trained for the last five months and as per her timing at training, she should have completed the race in one minute. She couldn’t react immediately to the starter’s gun and took time to realise the clock had started to tick,” her 79-year-old son, Gurdev, told HT from Auckland.
Mann was assured of victory as she was the only competitor in the 100-plus category, but her participation itself is a motivation for the young generation, and she was mentioned as the ‘Miracle from Chandigarh’ in the New Zealand media.
“Before the start of the race we knew gold was hers, but our target was to improve the timing and she was able to do it and that’s a victory,” said Gurdev. “For the last few days she was in pain due to her bent spine, but she was so happy after completing the race that she forgot all about it.”
On Wednesday, she will compete in 200m and shot put, and a day later in javelin throw.
Gurdev, who introduced Mann to sports eight years ago, won silver in long jump (3.21m) and bronze in 100m (17 seconds). “Earlier, my best performance at the Games was fourth, but this time we had trained well at the Punjabi University, Patiala, and it helped both of us,” said Gurdev.