The Mumbai Marathon on Saturday was accorded the gold label by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), becoming the only full marathon in India to enjoy the status.
The event, held in January every year, joined an elite list of marathons in the world, including the likes of the Boston Marathon, New York City Marathon and London Marathon, to be a gold label road race.
The Delhi Half Marathon and the Bengaluru 10K run are also gold label road races, but the Mumbai Marathon is the first full marathon from the country to be given the status.
The 2019 Mumbai Marathon will be held on January 20 and is set to host over 46,000 participants running across six race categories, according to the organisers.
The IAAF gold label is granted to races based on stringent criteria, including organisational excellence, world-class elite field representation, prize money for male and female runners, exhaustive medical support system, live television coverage for an enhanced reach of the race, media facilities, timing and qualified personnel to ensure smooth conduct of the event across departments, among others, a press release said.
Adille Sumariwala, vice-president of the Indian Olympic Association and president of the Athletics Federation of India, hailed the decision of the international athletics body. “We have been a part of this event since its inception and this is a phenomenal accolade for the Tata Mumbai Marathon,” he said.