The weather is good and so is the form of the top flight athletes. The third edition of the Sunfeast World 10K run at Bangalore is expected to throw up some interesting times.
Deriba Merga, the Ethiopian defending champion, who is stuck in Dubai is expected to fly in later along with a few others, but the field is not short of stars.
Wilson Kipsang is here well in advance and has had a feel of the course, which has needed a few minor alterations from the earlier years, and so is Tadese Tola, the recent Paris marathon winner who looked in good shape.
“I'm fully recovered and raring to go,” said Tola the 22-year-old Ethiopian. “I am in good shape and should be pushing hard for a good finish.” he added.
Tanzanian Fabiano Joseph, a former World half marathon runner, is also here and sounded confident. “I have trained well enough for this event and am hoping for a good result. The event is good and so is the prize money here and that has been a major attraction.”
Among the women Aselefech Mergia is the hot favourite. The defending champion from Ethiopia sounded calm and composed on the eve of the event. “I have had a great start to the season with a third place finish in the London Marathon and the World championships with a time of 2 hour 22:00 seconds. Having an idea about the course, and the good weather here, I should be able to run a good race.”
Elvan Abeylegessie, the Turkish runner who was involved in a ‘dead' heat in the opening year with Grace Momanyi (Kenya), is hoping to win conclusively this time around. “I am in good shape now and having run two good races this year I am confident of making it count here,” said the strong willed lady.
With six races — the World 10K (men and women), the open 10K, the Majja Run, the Senior Citizen run, and the wheel chair race all tagged in from 7.10 a.m. — over 23,245 plus a few spot entries for the majja run is expected to choke Bangalore's arterial roads for a good three hours.