(from left) Asst. Prof. Suchart Taweepornpathomkul of Thai Health Promotion Foundation, Senior Executive Vice President of PTT Chaivat Churitti, President of KKU Affairs Promotion Apisit Rujikiatkamjorn, Deputy Khon Kaen Governor Songpol Jampapun, and Asst. Prof. Wichai Neerattanapun were at the press conference held recently.
Next years 6th Khon Kaen International Marathon is to be held on 25 January. Six trophies and 2 million baht in cash are up for grabs for the winners. The Khon Kaen Governor has announced prompt support for the venue, attempting to promote Khon Kaen as the city of Thailands most famous marathon.
The marathon is being organized by KKU, along with public and private organizations from around the province. The events main sponsors are PTT and the Thai Health Promotion Foundation. The program is scheduled to encourage and promote the value of exercise among people, and serve as a stage for young runners to develop their skills to meet international standards. The program has been approved by AIMS as a qualified program providing quality marathon running tracks and routes.
The winner will be awarded 200,000 baht and a trophy from HM the King, for both male and female categories. The first runner-up will receive 100,000 baht and the second runner up 60,000 baht. In the half marathon, the winner will be granted 40,000 baht and a trophy from HM the Queen, for male and female categories, while the first and second runners-up will receive 20,000 and 12,000 baht respectively. In the mini marathon category, the male and female winners will be awarded 10,000 baht each, and trophies from HRH Princess Sirindhorn. The first and second runners-up will be granted 6,000 and 5,500 baht. There are also varied prizes for the winner of each age group, which accounts for a total prize fund of 2,000,000 baht.
Aphisit Rujikiatkamjorn, the Khon Kaen Marathon organizing committee chairman, chaired a press conference in September at the local PTT press office. Media officials and marathon runners from many clubs and associations joined the conference.
Khon Kaen Deputy Governor Songpol Jampapun said that the people of Khon Kaen have put in their best effort, and give high significance to the Khon Kaen International Marathon. The people are willing to promote their town as the city of marathon, or the city in which its people are enthusiastic about the marathon. Khon Kaen province has been working to ensure preparation of the track and route for the program, including traffic control. Since this event will be attended by international athletes, the province also gives high attention to the security of participants, said Deputy Governor Songpol.
Assistant Professor Wichai Neerattanapun, the deputy director in charge of arts, culture and alumni relations, said that the previous five times the event has been staged were all great successes. The events were joined by a great number of both Thai and foreign marathon runners. The number of foreign participants has also risen. This says that the event has been accepted by international athletes as meeting international levels. KKU has improved the quality of the track and route to be better than previous years, rearranging internal campus traffic to ensure runners safety. Accommodation and camping areas have been set near the start and finish points to provide better hospitality to participants. Toilets have been provided in higher numbers than in previous years, while the cheering teams will be much more colorful and lively than before said Professor Wichai.
Khon Kaen University impressed participants with a showcase of the national costume, which was awarded Best National Dress at this years Miss Universe in Vietnam. The national dress was a creation of KKU student Sathapat Moonma from the Faculty of Arts. A KKU show to present the citys readiness to host the international marathon was also presented. The nations Olympic hero, Somjit Jongjorhor, who earned a gold medal at the recent Beijing Olympic Games, also joined the press conference.
Those interested in competing in the marathon or taking part in staging the event should contact any branch of Ayudhya Bank or Siam Commercial Bank, the KKU alumni club or www.khonkaenmarathon.com You can also call 043-202388-9 or 043-202750.