NST extend deadline for 10k race entries

Denzil Pinto 30/06/2014
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Popular race: A huge response has prompted extension of registration deadline.

The NAS Sports Tournament (NST) organising committee yesterday extended the registration deadline for the 10k race until July 3.

The road running race, scheduled for July 4 at 22:15, will start at the Falcon Heritage Center near Mey­dan Hotel in Dubai and finish at Nad Al Sheba Sports Complex.

The race will have five categories for club and elite runners for both males and females.

Additionally, those who are new to the sport can enter the social category, which is open to runners aged 18 and under.

Majid Alabbar, chairman of the security and protocol committee, said: “The deadline was supposed to be yesterday (Sunday) but the organising committee received so many inquiries and applications from different parts of the country that it decided to extend the regis­tration period until July 3.”

Meanwhile, registration for the cycling event is open until 10:00 on July 10.

Taking place at 22:15 on July 11, participants will cycle a dis­tance of 70km with the same start and finish as the 10k run.

The race will have six categories – club and elite cyclists for both male and females, as well as the so­cial section, open to disabled com­petitors and juniors.

Registration can be done online by visiting www.nasst.ae.

Organised under the patronage and directives of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Dubai Sports Council president, NST, the largest sport event during the Holy Month of Ramadan, got under way yesterday. 

Futsal, volleyball, paddle ten­nis and squash are part of the pro­gramme, which ends on July 21.

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Maria Conceicao receives two Guinness World Records for Ultramarathon efforts

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No pain no gain: Conceicao poses alongside the group of children that her charity supports.

Dubai-based charity founder Maria Conceicao has received the official confirmation of her double world record success from Guinness World Records after conquering the 777 Ultramarathon Challenge. 

The Ultramarathon is a seven full-distance 50km run completed accross the seven continents within seven weeks.

Not only did Conceicao complete the challenge, she did so in just six weeks.

She crossed the line of the final ultramarathon in South Africa together with her race colleague Ziyad Rahim, who gained the same record in the male category.

The Porgugal native secured her second record for the fastest aggregate time to complete an ultramarathon on seven continents. 

Conceicao completed the challenge for her charity, the Maria Cristina Foundation (MCF), which helps educate children in Dhaka, Bangladesh, in an attempt to free them from poverty. 

The first Portugese woman to summit Mount Everest, Conceicao has taken a number of other endurance challenges in the past, all aimed at raising awareness and funds for the organisation. 

MCF currently supports over 200 children from the slums of Dhaka, in primary, secondary and college education programs.

The group sends children with the most promising potential to schools in Dhaka that provide higher quality and which could give the children the best possible opportunities to break out of poverty.

The 777 Ultramarathon Challenge has certainly raised awareness of the Foundation and its work, but the charity remains in urgent need of funds to help more children stay in school and continue their education. 

Appealing for help in supporting the group’s cause, Maria said: “The Foundation is hugely grateful for donations from generous individuals who have been our saviors, but we really need more corporate partners to support our work. There are a lot of companies who can be potential partners, and we appeal to them to consider working with us as part of their CSR program.

"We know that many are one with us in believing that education is the best way to eradicate poverty. Education empowers children with the hope and tool to dream bigger and achieve more, not only for themselves but for their families and the communities they live in. 

"MCF has the experience and knowledge required to provide the maximum social impact from any financial support from a partner, so we do hope you consider placing your trust in us.”  

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North Korea to send delegation to Asian games

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Happy days: North Korea will compete in its first major sporting event since 2002 in neighbouring South Korea.

North Korea said Friday it will send athletes to this year's Asian Games in South Korea, the first time it has participated in a major sporting event there for more than a decade and despite simmering tensions between the neighbours.

"The Olympic Committee of the DPRK (North Korea) decided to dispatch DPRK players' group to the 17th Asian Games" in Incheon, South Korea, Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said.

The North's Olympic Committee has officially informed the Asian Olympic Council of its decision, KCNA said.

Pyongyang boycotted the 1988 Olympics in Seoul but sent athletes and cheerleaders to the 2002 Asian Games in South Korea's southern port city of Busan.

South Korea had invited the North to participate in this year's Asian Games, which it is hosting from September 19 to October 4, through the Olympic Council of Asia, the governing body for all sports in Asia.

Tension has been running high between Pyongyang and Seoul for months, with the South accusing the North on Thursday of firing shells into waters near one of its warships as it patrolled south of the disputed Yellow Sea border.

The North on Friday rejected the allegation as "sheer fabrication", with the South in turn accusing it of a "blatant lie".

The neighbours have also upped the ante in their verbal exchanges over crashed spy drones recently recovered in South Korea, while there have been fears that Pyongyang may be preparing to conduct a fourth nuclear test.

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