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Indian women marathoners aim for London berth

Indian women athletes are geared up to give their best timings in the ninth edition of the Mumbai Marathon today.


Preethi Rao

This being the Olympic year, the athletes are aiming to make the most of the opportunity. The B qualification mark for men's is 2 hours, 18 minutes and for women, it is 2:43.

Preethi L Rao (29), who will compete in the full marathon for the first time, is ready for the challenge.  "This is the best opportunity for me to perform on a bigger stage.

While 42km is not my forte, I want to go that extra mile and do well. In the process, I am hoping to qualify for the London Olympics," said the Karnataka athlete.

Lalita Babbar is also training hard for a berth in the London games. "I have been training for around nine months in Bangalore for this day.

Winning the Delhi Half Marathon in 2010 and 2011 inspired me to run the full marathon. My ultimate dream is to represent the country at the London Olympics," said the 23-year-old from Satara.

Defending champion Jyoti Gawate of Parbhani looks to better her last edition timing of 3:05:30 hours. "My aim for this marathon is not just win, but better my earlier
timing," she said.

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