The Wipro Chennai Marathon 2016 is back!
The Wipro Chennai Marathon is back ! Runners get set for one of India’s biggest marathons.
To make it smooth for the runners, TWCM 2016 race director, Ms.Deepa Bharatkumar has answered all of your questions .
1. How many editions of TWCM are over?
Although we Chennai Runners have been conducting running events informally since 2006, The Wipro Chennai Marathon, as we know it today, has been successfully conducted for four years annually (since 2012) and we are looking forward to delivering our fifth edition, the Wipro Chennai Marathon 2016 or #TWCM16 to the people and city of Chennai.
- How many people ran in 2015?
In spite of the tragic flooding in December 2015, the event was re-scheduled to 31st Jan 2016 & christened as #SpiritOfChennaiRun. Runners responded in full strength and we had a stupendous 16,000 runners.
- How much funds did you collect for charity last year?
Rs. 45 Lakh was raised by our runners and distributed to 35 NGOs via United Way of Chennai, our exclusive Charity Partner for The WIpro Chennai Marathon 2015.
- How does one train to run for a marathon?
A ‘marathon’ is a running event, the length of the course is 42.2 km. However, in The Wipro Chennai Marathon, we also have two other run categories: the Half Marathon and a 10k Run. If you are a beginner, we suggest you start running short distances at a slow jog with walk breaks for rest, and very slowly build endurance to be able to run in a 10k event. There are 18 Chennai Runners chapters throughout Chennai. They offer free peer guidance and training runs and workouts to beginner runners, everyone is welcome. The Half Marathon and Full Marathon events are long-distance endurance events and should be attempted by runners who have already run shorter distances for some time. Again, anyone can train with Chennai Runners chapters, and there are several training plans available for free on the internet, and some coaches also offer to train runners for a fee under their guidance. Anyone training for a running event of any distance, in addition to a training plan, needs only three key ingredients: (1) A committed, disciplined approach to training (2) Wholesome nutrition (3) Adequate rest & recovery
- How is Chennai responding to TWCM?
Now in it’s fifth year, The TWCM is the largest running event in our region and is truly becoming an iconic event of our city. It’s identity is truly woven into the cultural fabric of Madras. TWCM excites and thrills runners and non-runners alike. For example, last year, we had a hand-cart labourer distributing Parle-G biscuits and water to our runners! We receive support from on-lookers who cheer our runners on the route, thousands of volunteers and dozens of organisations in the endurance & outdoor sports realm. We could not conduct our event without the backing of the Tamil Nadu State Government, it’s various sports bodies, the Tamil Nadu Athletic Association, and the Chennai Traffic Police. The Wipro Chennai Marathon therefore truly is of the people, by the people and for the people and spirit of Chennai. This year it is planned to be even bigger, with 20000 runners expected to participate.
- Do you have plans to expand to other cities?
Chennai Runners is a not-for-profit organisation. It’s volunteers come together to conduct TWCM; and such we are a local event. We hope that the running movement grows to several cities and towns. Many other running groups have spawned in other nearby cities with encouragement and support from Chennai Runners, and they now conduct their own running events. However, we at TWCM are not a business with expansion plans, and are not currently looking to expand to other cities.
- How do you think TWCM has contributed to the growth of the running community?
Chennai Runners started off being an ‘organisation’ when three local runners accidentally ran into each other in 2006 on our roads and thought it was a good idea to gang up and spread the running fever to encourage a healthy lifestyle. Today, Chennai sees about 2000 fitness enthusiasts on the roads each morning in various neighbourhoods, and the TWCM will see 20,000 participants this year in December. Need I say more?
- What can runners expect from TWCM this year?
On December 11 2016 a wave of 20,000 runners in three run categories will pound the pavement and race to the finish line. The atmosphere will be electric, the energy palpable. Well-stocked aid stations with friendly volunteers and trained medical personnel will be attending to runners needs along the race route. The finish line will be a celebration zone where the friends and families of 20,000 runners will be congratulating them for their medals and their personal transformation. Everyone can be a winner in this race.
- How do you think you stand out when compared to other runs/marathons?
Each running event / marathon has its own reason to exist, its own identity. Some are conducted as trail runs, other are conducted only for women, yet others are special because they are shorter distance events.
These are some of the reasons which make TWCM unique:
- We are the only full marathon event in the city
- At 20,000 runners, we are the largest running event in the region, and considered among the bunch of largest urban marathons in India
- TWCM is conducted by Chennai Runners, a not-for-profit organisation run by runner-volunteers. The event is of the the runners, by the runners, for the runners. Runner experience is paramount in our planning efforts.
- TWCM is an iconic running event now firmly woven into the cultural fabric of Chennai. With the backing of government organisations, sports bodies, police, citizens, volunteers and runners, it has become Chennai’s event.
- Why don’t you have a brand ambassador for your event?
Correction, please! 20,000 brand ambassadors shall run TWCM on December 11, 2016. To us, each runner is a brand ambassador. Each runner has an inspiring story of how, when and why they conquered the race distance they chose to run.
- Could tell us the organizers group for TWCM this year?
The TWCM is planned and conducted by an extremely dedicated and passionate team of runner-volunteers from Chennai Runners, a not-for-profit organisation. In some way or another, each Chennai Runner contributes towards the successful conduct of TWCM. The Core Team of Chennai Runners is an experienced team who lends their collective energies and expertise to the Joint Race Director and Race Director who serve as executives for the team. This year, the Joint Race Director is Shankar Lal M Patel & the Race Director is Deepa Bharatkumar.
- How do you put together such a big event? Could you brief on what goes into making such a big event a success.
I believe that our passion for the sport of running is what gives us wind beneath our wings. We Chennai Runners, as an organization and the TWCM as an event, have grown very organically and the team has gathered experience and valuable lessons over several years. All TWCM organizers are committed to delivering a superlative running experience to our runners. We draw on this team’s collective energy and focus to deliver each edition of TWCM. Grassroots word-of-mouth type of awareness throughout the running community in the region and beyond is what brings most runners to participate at the TWCM, but we also reach out to non-runners and beginners via an outreach campaign. Our valuable sponsors, event and media agencies and vendors too play a crucial role in TWCM’s success.
- How do you attract sponsors?
TWCM will now conduct its fifth annual edition, and each year we have grown in leaps and bounds. Sponsors who supported our earlier editions are still standing by us, and new esteemed sponsors are showing a keen interest in partnering with us as our event grows. TWCM is a running event and we reach out to interested sponsors who align with our goals for our runners.
- How do you tie up with charitable trusts?
Supporting local causes and worthy NGOs has been in the hearts and minds of Chennai Runners, and during each edition of TWCM we have raised large amounts of voluntary charitable donations. Our team is constantly working towards making runners aware that they can anchor a charitable fund-raising effort through their running, and we hope to expand this programme of TWCM this year as well, with our Charity Partners, the United Way of Chennai.
- When is the registration for TWCM 2016 starting?
Runners can look forward to registering for TWCM, to be conducted on 11th December 2016 this year, from 24th June 2016 until mid-November, or until we reach our registration cap of 20,000.
Registrations are now live at our website: www.thewiprcochennaimarathon.com
- How many runners do you expect for TWCM 2016?
20,000 total runners in three race categories
- What is the expected split of number of runners in the 10k, 21k and 42k?
On 11th December, it is expected that the participation in our three race categories shall be as follows:
1250 : Full Marathon Runners
5000 : Half Marathon Runners
13750 : 10k Runners
- What are the ways to register for the run?
- If you are an individual runner , registrations are now live at our website: thewiprcochennaimarathon.com
- If you wish to register as a charity runner, you can do so on the same registrations page by selecting from one of three ways to donate to a charitable cause of your choice.
- If you are a corporate organization and wish to purchase registrations in bulk (20 or more registrations in a single transaction) you may do so by connecting with us on the link in the web page or send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Are there any training runs conducted by the Chennai runners to prepare for the runners for the run?
Chennai Runners operates year-round through 18 chapters. Each chapter meets at least three times per week and conducts its own training runs and workout sessions. Everyone is welcome to join these chapters – chapter coordinators and other experienced runners help beginners get started with running. As TWCM approaches, we conduct several beginner programmes, lectures and training runs. Please find a chapter convenient to you on our website www.chennairunners.com and join us for a run.
- What challenges do you think await you in organizing the biggest marathon in this part of the country?
Chennai’s climate remains understandably infamous for its humidity and warmth, BUT outstation runners especially don’t realize that December is Chennai’s cool, breezy & overcast monsoon season, and a very pleasant month, weather-wise. We hope that outstation runners from prior TWCM editions will help spread the word about the mild weather and the wonderful TWCM event.