MUMBAI: As the countdown to India’s most prestigious marathon begins, event promoters Procam International Thursday announced 44,407 registrations lining up for Tata Mumbai Marathon 2018 and two new sponsors coming on board.
India’s leading mineral water brand Bisleri is hydration partner while Tata Nexon is a "driven-by" partner.
As already announced, the $405,000 event's elite field is headlined by Ethiopia’s Tokyo Marathon 2017 runner-up Solomon Deksisa and Mumbai Marathon 2017 runner-up Kenya’s Joshua Kipkorir; while the women’s category will see defending champion Kenya’s Bornes Kitur and 2017 Ljubljana Marathon winner Ethiopia’s Shuko Genemo.
The Indian men’s field has Asian marathon champion Gopi T, along with Nitendra Singh Rawat, Mumbai Marathon 2016 course record holder; whilst Asian & Commonwealth steeplechase Gold medallist Sudha Singh will lead the women’s challenge along with L Suriya - the fastest Indian women and course record holder for Airtel Delhi Half Marathon and Tata Steel Kolkata 25K. The Indian contingent will be paced by Hendrick Ramaala, the New York Marathon and Mumbai Marathon winner in 2004.
The event has seen a new high with registrations across all six categories of races from over 30 nationalities.
Pradipta Bagchi, Group chief communications officer said, “The Tata Mumbai marathon has created an opportunity for the Tata group to increase its engagement with the community, connect with the youth and create awareness about the importance of good health and wellness. Marathon running requires commitment, passion, integrity & dedication, these reflect the ideals of the Tata group.”
He added, “The Tata group has promoted and nurtured sports for over 75 years. This commitment has resulted in the setting up of academies for different sports, sponsorships of events and individuals. We are delighted to start this new partnership on the occasion of 150 years of the Tata group.”
The feature race will witness a participation of 6,955 runners, while 14,950 runners will run the Half Marathon. The inaugural Timed 10K Run has 1,652 runners in its debut year. The Senior Citizens and the Champions with Disability Run will witness 1,130 and 1,220 runners, respectively. Mumbai’s favourite, the very colourful Dream Run will have 18,500 enthusiastic runners take to the road adding to the carnival-like atmosphere.
Ravi Viswanathan, chief marketing officer, TCS said, "TCS has been associated with the Mumbai Marathon for the last ten years and this year it is even more special to us, since it is the Tata Mumbai Marathon. It is the single largest philanthropic sporting event held in India and provides a great platform to run for a cause.
TCS has been actively involved in promoting a healthy and active lifestyle with a focus on fit workforce. Globally, we have been leveraging our Fit4Life initiative as well as external partnerships with leading international distance running properties to promote wellness and community development among our employees, their families, and our customers. Tata Mumbai Marathon is a great way to increase our engagement with the community, raise funds for charity as well as create societal awareness about the necessity of good health and fitness".
Vivek Singh, joint managing director, Procam International, said, “The Mumbai Marathon has constantly aimed to bring out the best in our society and the growing running community is a testimony to our faith and dream for delivering a world class event. This success is not possible without the support from government of Maharashtra and all our new and existing sponsors. We would like to welcome on board Tata Motors and Bisleri for the 2018 edition of the event. With the spectacular line-up of professional athletes and Sergey Bubka as the event ambassador, we are sure the 2018 edition of the event will be a day to remember. We wish all the participants good luck as they gear up for race day.”
Vivek Srivatsa, head Marketing, Passenger Vehicles, Tata Motors, said: “Sport has always been an integral part of the Tata way of life and we stand committed to furthering the cause of Indian sport. We look forward to being a vital part of the event as the Driven By Partner and support the event as it attracts the world’s best athletes on Indian soil. Our most recent introduction, the stylish, compact lifestyle SUV, the Tata Nexon will be the star attraction at the event. With Level Nex design, driving dynamics, the Nexon will be the lead car of the Tata Mumbai Marathon and we are planning exciting on-ground & digital activations to engage with fans and participants at the event.”
Anjana Ghosh, director - Marketing Bisleri International Pvt. Ltd., said, “We are proud to associate with the Tata Sons Mumbai Marathon 2018. Being the hydration partner, we have set up 25 water stations on the running track, to ensure that all the participants are well hydrated. Marathons and sports are such events where right amount of hydration builds runners and athletes endurance. Having a number of health benefits, water is the best drink that you can give to your body and it's important that we understand the right amount of water required by our body and follow a steady routine to achieve a fit mind and body. Further, we are excited to see participants response to our mesh installation made out of recycled bottles that embodies our PET recycling initiative - Bottles for change”.