TCS World 10K Bengaluru: Can't rule out course record, feels Hugh Jones

BENGALURU: With the metro work done and dusted in the heart of the city -- helping it regain most of its lost charm - some of IAAF's Gold Label athletes competing in next Sunday's TCS World 10K Bengaluru will have a great chance to rewrite the course record feels Race Director Hugh Jones.

"The course looks beautiful. The top runners can be little excused if they don't post a fast time and perhaps even a new course record. The roads now look in very good condition," Jones told reporters at an event to unveil the race route at the Sree Kanteerava stadium here on Wednesday.


He said the only alteration to the course is that athletes will run 200m less inside the stadium. "Athletes now run clockwise after entering the stadium. To compensate that (200m), we have moved the turning point on Kamaraj Road and now they almost go till the end of that road," Jones said.

"It feels good to be back for the 12th edition but it's not been an easy journey (on a few occasions) switching the course because of the metro work, rain, etc. We even had a tree blocking the exit from the stadium but we got it cleared within two hours," said Jones, who has been the race director since the inaugural race.

Jones said the elite athletes preferred an early start and this time the women will start first at 7.10am and the men at 8am. He said the Bengaluru course was not easy due to the altitude (920 metres above sea level). "I think that works out to be probably 20 seconds slower (compared to the flat ones)," he said.

Procam International Joint Managing Director Vivek Singh was excited about the 17 gold label athletes in the fray. "Agnes (Tirop) is back and we have some of the best runners competing, including gold label athletes. We are looking forward to a thrilling race," Singh said.

Kenya's Agnes set the course record last year while winning the women's title in a time of 31:19s. The men's record is in the name of another Kenyan, Geoffrey Kamworor, who clocked 27:44s in 2014.


220 medics for Race Day


The rush to book a running spot has gathered pace over the years. "From 7- to 8,000 entries for the Open 10K, this year we have over 16,000 entries and that shows more and more people are inspired to run," Singh said.


A total of 220 medical personnel will be on duty on Race Day with two 30-bed mini hospitals set up at the Kanteerava stadium. "We will have five doctors patrolling the course on bikes and many more running. We have over 24,000 runners registered to run but we don't know how many are well prepared," said Dr Vivek Jawali, the Medical Director of the race.


Elvis Joseph, CEO of the Karnataka Athletics Association, believes that the event has benefitted not just athletes, but also the technical officials who are getting great exposure through the TCS World 10K.
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