Indian Sprinter Dutee Chand has confirmed her participation in the season’s first Indian Grand Prix. The 100m Women’s National record holder will be seen competing at the National Institute of Sports (NIS) in Patiala on February 18.
The silver medallist in the 2018 Asian Games will take part in the 100m and 200m events. The event kicks off the domestic season for Indian track and field athletes and will also be the qualifiers for the Tokyo Olympics.
The Grand Prix will also see athletes like Amiya Kumar Mallick s the 100m national record holder for men and 400m national record holder Muhammad Anas. Also other athletes like Arokia Rajiv who is Asian Games bronze medallist in 200m, Noah Nirmal Tom (200m) and Dharun Ayyasamy (400m hurdles).
“I’m treating the competition as a warmup race for the Federation Cup to be held next month. I will see how my body reacts to the race as I’m racing after a long gap due to the pandemic and then prepare for the competition next month,” Amiya Kumar Mallick told IANS.
While the vent will see a lot of big-name athletes, there will be plenty of them who will miss out. Manjeet Singh who is a gold medallist in 800m event at the 2018 Asian Games will miss out along with Murali Sreeshankar who is a national record holder in long jump and 200m star in the women’s half Hima Das.
As Javelin will be the part of Indian Grand Prix II and it is not scheduled in the first one, Neeraj Chopra will not be present at the first event.
There will be a total of 15 events which are scheduled and will include two races each in the men’s 100m and 200m sprints. With athletes already in their process of preparation, there are limited entries in each event.
The men’s 400m and the 800m races have received just eight entries while the women’s 200m and 800m has just three entries. Whereas women’s discus and shot put, too, have just three entries each.
This will be a great opportunity for Indian athletes to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. The 4x400m mixed relay team and Avinash Sable (3000m steeplechase) are the only Indian track and field athletes who have made it to the Summer Games.
The first Indian GP on February 18 will be followed by Indian GP II on February 25. Following the first two Indian Grand Prix, there will be the Federation Cup from March 15-19.