Sikh woman creates history at 101 in international sports


IMG_1823It is certainly a stupendous effort. When most of the people leave the hope of life and they confine themselves to the bed, you can find this lady walking, running and throwing in the parks of this city beautiful. This is the gripping tale of unwavering dedication and passion towards the sport and this 101-year-old woman runner has become the most searched person on web after she picked up the gold medal.

Mann Kaur completed the race in a minute and a half to claim the gold medal as she is the only female competitor in her age category at the competition for older athletes. Though she was the only participant ian her age group but this does not undermine her performance, because her timing of one minute 14 seconds in 100 dash is only 64.42 second slower than the world record of Usain Bolt he set in 2009. This is a world record in this age group.

She added another feather to her cap when she won 200 meter dash in two minutes and 58 seconds. That shows the level of her endurance. She won the third gold in Shop put event. This 100+ lady threw the two kilogram iron ball to the distance of 2.1 meter. This way the tally of her gold medals reached 19.

After her matchless performances she told the reporters that she will continue taking part in athletic events as she enjoys it. “I will run again and again and never give up”.

It is interesting to note that Man Kaur took up athletics at the of 93. She had no previous experience in any of the sport. In these eight years she did unparallel. It was her son Gurdev Singh who inspired her to take up running and also took her to international platform.

But her journey to international competitions was not a smooth ride; she had to undergo medical checkups to prove her health. Doctors and organizers were apprehensive about her fitness. When reports of medical checkup came, she had a sigh of relief; doctors had cleared her for taking part in any competition.

With the passage of time her tally of gold medals is increasing and with this speed she will soon catch-up with the great swimmer Michael Phelaps. Her presence in Auckland is felt by all. She is a crowed puller. World Master Games chief executive Jennath Wootten says, “Man Kaur truly personifies the ‘sports for all’ philosophy which World Masters Games is all about and we are thrilled to have her here.

Charmaine Crooks, a five-time Olympian who won a silver medal for Canada in the women’s 4×400-meter relay in 1984, serves as an athlete ambassador for the Masters Games. She praised Kaur’s “dynamic spirit.”

“I know that it inspired me. Hey, I’ve got almost 50 more years to go, right?” Crooks said. “She’s inspiring everyone, young and old.” Mann Kaur from India needed almost a minute-and-a-half to cross the finish line in the 100-meter dash, and she comfortably picked up a gold medal at the American Masters Games held on April 24.When she crossed the finish line in Vancouver, her competitors many of them in their 70s and 80s were there to cheer her on. Kaur’s energy and drive to compete have become an inspiration to participants in the unique international event for athletes over 30.

When asked to share her secret to long life, Mann Kaur said a good diet and lots of exercise can help one to achieve a long-lasting life. Kaur began running at age 93 at the suggestion of her son and went on to win more than 20 medals in Masters Games across the globe.

Gurdev Singh, who is Mann Kaur’s son ,commented “When she wins, she goes back to India, and she’s excited to tell others, ‘I have won so many medals from this country.’” He said “Winning makes my mother happy.”

After Kaur finished the sprint in one minute and 21 seconds, she stood smiling with her hands raised in the air.Asked how she felt, she breathed heavily and clutched a bottle of water, unable to speak. Earlier, she won gold medals in the javelin and shot put.

Her son who is 78 is also competing in the Games, said he encouraged his mother to start running at age 93 because he knew she could become a star. “I asked her. ‘You have no problem, no knee problem, no heart problem, you should start running,’” he recalled.

Kaur has now won more than 20 medals in Masters Games across the globe. While practising in her home of Chandigarh, she goes out every evening to run five or 10 short distances, said her son. He said his mother believes in promoting running to other older women. “She encourages them, old ladies, that they should run, they should not eat wrong foods, and they should encourage their children also to take part in the Games.”