Golden start to para 'cyclist' Karmakar
Greater Noida (PTI): Prasanta Karmakar, the para-swimmer-turned-cyclist, made a grand entry into the para-cycling sport by bagging two gold medals for ...
Greater Noida (PTI): Prasanta Karmakar, the para-swimmer-turned-cyclist, made a grand entry into the para-cycling sport by bagging two gold medals for the country at the Hero Asian Para-Cycling Championships at the Buddha International Circuit here on Tuesday. But there were more cheers for India in its maiden appearance in the para-cycling event as apart from Karmakar's twin gold, the hosts also bagged three silver and two bronze medals in the championship. Karmakar, competing in MC 5 class of the Individual Time Trial, clocked 16:55.860s to outwit his compatriot Sachin Verma, who finished with a timing of 17:15.590s in the 10km event. The duo then lined up again in the 40km Individual Road Race with Karmakar, India's most decorated para-swimmer, striking gold for the second time in the day, followed by his Verma. While Karmakar finished with a timing of 1:13.31s, Verma clocked 1:14.31s to make it an all-India affair at the podium. Considering that the Indian para-cyclists were competing in the Asian championships for the first time, the seven-medal augurs well for the country. Verma, who also has nine international medals in para-swimming, did appreciate his rival's effort on the road. India made its first date with para-cycling all the more memorable when Aditya Mehta and Alok Mondal bagged two silver and two bronze medals respectively in MC 3 class in the road race category (10 kms and 40 kms). In the 10 km road event, gold went to South Korean Yongsik Jin who clocked 13:51.847s. Hyderabad-based Mehta won the silver with a timing of 18:11.297s while the bronze went to Mondal (18:39.536s), who finished ahead of two more Indians � Dharmender Kumar and Chetan Upadhayay.