MUMBAI: The 2014 edition of the Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon drew media professionals like a fish to water. A whole bunch of executive right from broadcast to media agencies to marketers to advertising professionals donned their sports shoes, and pinned their numbers to their T-shirts, and pounded the streets as they joined 40,000 other runners to test either the Dream Run, the half marathon or the entire distance.
Among those who woke themselves early on 19 January included: Meenakshi Menon (she and 10 others ran for an NGO Vanashakti), Suki Dusanj, Times Television Network CEO Sunil Lulla, former Indiagames CEO Vishal Gondal, Mindshare’s Jai Lala, Vizeum India head S. Yesudas, Sahara group’s Kailashnath Koppikar, Sapna Bhavnani, MindShare’s Rajit Desai, Sony Entertainment’s Deep Drona, Star India’s Kevin Vaz, Lashmi Narasimham, Bharat Kapadia, Mindshare’s Amin Lakhani, Paritosh Joshi, HDFC Life’s marketing head Sanjay Tripathy, CNBC TV18 marketing head Suranjana Ghosh Aikara.
Some of them ran for charity; some to challenge themselves. Their facebook accounts and twitter posts were replete with their individual experiences and how they bettered their previous best times. Or how they braved aches and pains to complete the course they had set for themselves.
Rajit Desai completed his first half marathon in 2 hours 47 minutes, a feat which he felt was not spectacular, but "satisfying for a debut." Jain Lala wore the number 34377 on his jersey and had all his colleagues and friends going ga-ga over him. Sony's Deep Drona ran his half marathon in 2 hours 4 minutes and 9 seconds. Said he: "Bettered last year by 2 mins. Great result compared to the work put in this year."
Viacom18 Pictures Ajit Andhare ran with his friends from the times of his GE days and also to promote the studios upcoming Abhay Deol film. Yesudas hit the asphalt for the half marathon, adding to the tally of long distance races he has participated in. Entertainment Network India Ltd (ENIL - Radio Mirchi) CEO Prashant Panday completed his half marathon in 1 hour 53 minutes, which is by all standards a good time for a non-professional runner.
Media industry veteran and now marketing consultant Bharat Kapadia says he ran his seventh consecutive half marathon and completed it in 2 hours 17 minutes.
Viacom18 Media group CEO Sudhanshu Vats, on his part, ran the full marathon in a classy time of just under four hours.
Times TV's Sunil Lulla did well too. Said he: " Mumbai Half Marathon, 2014. My first and I am grateful to complete it in. 1 hr: 54 mins: 29 sec , ranking 650 overall and 78 in Veteran. I pledged a healthy sum of money to CMCA, and am glad I could deliver on my promise. Thank You."