At the 12-hour Mumbai Ultra marathon, every runner is a winner

Captain Deepak Singhal

Captain Deepak Singhal  

Navy Captain shuttles between run and work, steals show

Over 500 runners — including women, personnel from the Indian Navy, Coast Guard and police department — participated in the sixth edition of ‘The Mumbai Ultra - 12 Hour Run’ on the occasion of Independence Day, on Thursday.

Started in 2014, the marathon aims to raise awareness of the benefits of running. It followed the format of an ultramarathon, where one has to run over 42.2 km; participants ran between 50 km and 120 km. Each of the runners had a timing chip, which helped them record the number of kilometres they ran. Every participant who completed the race was a winner and was awarded the Finisher’s Medal. The event, which began at Shivaji Park, saw participants run from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. with mandatory breaks for medical check-ups and meals.

Among the runners was Captain Deepak Singhal, the commanding officer of INS Delhi. With four full marathons and 22 half-marathons under his belt, Captain Singhal started at 5 a.m. and finished two loops covering 20 km by 7 a.m., before leaving his running bib at a stop location. He then left for Naval Dockyard, Mumbai, where his ship was docked.


There, Captain Singhal changed into his Navy Summer Ceremonial Dress after a quick shower and proceeded to inspect an entire team of officers and sailors at the ceremonial parade (called ‘divisions’ in the Indian Navy), which included an address to convey his thoughts and views on the occasion of 73rd Independence Day.

After the ceremonial parade, Captain Singhal interacted with his officers and men at high tea before changing into a fresh set of running gear and reaching the start point at 9.30 a.m. to resume his run. By the end of the day, the officer managed to clock 65 km.

Runners said the well-stocked hydration stations kept them going and prevented any dehydration despite the warm, cloudy weather throughout. Participants were also treated to a South Indian breakfast, khichdi for lunch and snacks as a part of post-run festivities.

The runners spread the message of ‘Wellness over Illness’ and ‘Run Over Cancer’, and the Mumbai Ultra raised donations in the name of Tata Memorial Hospital for the treatment of paediatric cancer patients. At least 10 children, who are patients at Tata Memorial Hospital, also ran a short distance along with their guardians and volunteers of the Mumbai Ultra Team in order to appreciate and support the runners participating in the event. They were joined by Prakash Agarwal (41), a cancer survivor, and Lata Alimchandani (61), a brain tumour survivor, both of whom finished the run.

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 6:57:47 PM |

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