Twenty-two teams, including a foreign team, are participating in the 1st TAAN Eco-Challenge 2013 being held in Kathmandu on August 17.
The Eco-Challenge is a team event comprising three sporting events – running, cycling and rafting. Each team has five participants including a team manager who will not participate in the sporting events. All four participants will first run on the 6.5-kilometer track from Tokha to Pani Muhan and cycle on the 14.5-kilometer track in the Shivapuri-Nagarjun National Park. After completing cycling at Sundarijal, the participants will raft on 7.5-kilometer segment of Bagmati River until Gokarna – the finishing point of the event. However, teams can start rafting only after all members of the group complete cycling.
The winning team will receive a shield, gold medals, certificates and cash prize of Rs 100,000. Similarly, the first runner-up will receive silver medals, certificates and cash prize of Rs 75,000, while the second runner-up will receive bronze medals, certificates and a purse of Rs 50,000.
A Fishtail Air helicopter will do aerial photography of the event.
Australian Ambassador to Nepal His Excellency Glenn White and Member Secretary of National Sports Council (NSC) Yubaraj Lama are scheduled to inaugurate the event. Similarly, Minister for Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Ram Kumar Shrestha will grace the closing ceremony as the Chief Guest.
“Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) aims to develop the event as an international standard sporting event in the country,” Mohan Lamsal, general secretary of TAAN, said. “As a part of our ‘Nepal for All Seasons’ campaign, we also plan to promote the event as a tourism product for the off season.”
Saroj Neupane, coordinator of the event, said he was encouraged by the response for the event. “Initially, we had expected 10 groups. Now we have 22 groups, including a foreign team. We hope the number of teams will increase further next year,” he added.
source: TAAN, 16 Aug 2013