Gulmarg Global Derby today

‘ONLY RACE OF ITS KIND IN HIMALAYAS’

ABID KHAN

Gulmarg, Mar 2: The third edition of international skiing race, Gulmarg Global Derby will be held from Gondola Phase-I, Kongdoori to Pine Palace Hotel, Gulmarg on Thursday.
 In the event, which is long distance downhill ski race from Kongdoori to Gulmarg bowl around 50 top, skiers from all over world are going to participate.
 The event like previous occasions was scheduled to be held from 13000 ft high Apharwat range but due to bad weather conditions it was decided to organise it from Gondola Phase-I, Kongdoori. Due to this the organisers also reduced the number of participants. On previous occasions the competition was open for local skiers but this time due bad weather conditions the number of local players has been restricted to only 20. They include only expert skiers. The participants include around 20 foreign skiers, 15 non state skiers and 20 local. Director Tourism department, Farooq Shah is expected to be chief guest on the occasion.
 The competition is a brainchild of well known skier and owner of Pine Palace Resort Gulmarg, Mir Mudasir who started this event in 2008 with an aim to put Gulmarg on the map of international ski circuit.
 In 2008, he started the event with the name of Gulmarg Global derby, which was freestyle ski run from top of 13500 ft high Apharwat Mountain. In its inaugural year the competition attracted 53 skiers from different parts of world. Quoseoyianyi Norbert of Hangary emerged winner in ski run with the timing of 07:30:01 while as in Snow Boarding it was Carolin of South Africa.
 Mudasir says that holding of Gulmarg Global Derby annually will help Gulmarg to gets its recognition at international arena.
 “We have always believed that Gulmarg has got huge potential for international skiing. But only thing needed for that is promotion and that too event based promotion. The annual sports event has always helped states and countries in their promotion. Tour-de France, New-York marathon, Mumbai marathon, Delhi marathon have put their respective countries and states on global sports map. Similarly if we make this event a regular one it will help Gulmarg to get on global ski map.”
 Mudasir said that Gulmarg is the only ski resort in India were this type of long free run can be held as the slopes in other resorts like Himachal Pradesh are nothing in front of it.
 “Gulmarg is the only ski destination in country were such long freestyle down run race can be held. The racecourse from Apharwat to Gulmarg is of about 5-kilometers which is unparallel in any part of country. God has given us this facility and we should promote it in big way” he said. “If we succeeded in organizing this event annually it will put Gulmarg automatically on world sports map.”
 He said that Tourism Department, Winter Games Association of J&K, Cable Car Corporation  is doing everything to make a Gulmarg an international ski resort and they are even promoting it in big way.
 Terming Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah as the ski ambassador of state for his courage and enthusiasm to ski down from Gulmarg heights without any security.
 “What else we need if our Chief Minster is himself taking ski ride without any security cover. By that he made statement that Gulmarg is safe for skiing and no one should feel scared to come here” he said.
 The founder of the event is all praise for tourism department and Winter Games Association of JK for helping him to introduce the event.
 “From the first day I am saying that event is bigger than a person. It is true I have started it but without the support of tourism department, cable car corporation and Winter Games Association nothing could have been achieved. They helped by every means to organize the event last year and this year they also doing their bit” he said.
 About the future of event he said: “The future is bright as it is only race of its kind in Himalayan region. We must make it of freestyle and open entry type race in which any one can participate irrespective of state and country. If we manage to organize it annually in that way I am sure it will become international hit in next 3 to 4 years.”

Lastupdate on : Wed, 2 Mar 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 2 Mar 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 3 Mar 2011 00:00:00 IST




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