Vikash, Shyamilee run home
Sohra, July 17: Sohra's famously unpredictable weather behaved perfectly for the roughly 1,000 runners who took part in this year's Cherrapunjee Marathon, with sunshine spurring on the young and the old alike.
Meghalaya runners had a good show but both the men and women's winners of the main event - the full marathon, which was flagged off by chief minister Mukul Sangma - were from outside the state. Although his was not a competitive time by international standards, Vikas Kumar crossed the finish line in just under two hours and 47 minutes, followed by top woman runner Shyamilee Singh, who made it 45 minutes later.
Jomsingstar Ramsiej and Honton Rynjah finished second and third among the men, while Darishisha Iangjuh and Habari Warjri did the same in the women's event.
The challenging route, with changes in elevation throughout, was made palatable by the fantastic weather and scenery. This was the second edition of the marathon, organised by Run Meghalaya and supported by the government and state-owned and private businesses. Besides the full marathon of 42.2km, a half marathon, 10km run and a kids 'fun run' was also held on the day. Roughly a quarter of the 1,000 or so runners were from outside Meghalaya, including a large contingent from Chennai and a handful of foreigners.