For the first time ever Turkey will participate in the Mt. Everest marathon scheduled for May 29, the head of the "Sport for Everyone" Federation, Yasin Bölükbaşı, announced yesterday. Ece Vahapoğlu, a female Turkish author and journalist, will represent the country.
"Our athlete will stay in Nepal for 21 days from May 14 to June 3. She has to stay on Mt. Everest in order to get used to high rake, low oxygen and low air pressure and to reach that height with uphill walking," Bölükbaşı said in a written statement. He said the Turkish athlete will participate in the half-marathon category that will last six to seven hours along the 21-kilometer (13-mile) long course.
"Around 100 sports fans, 30 of whom are women, participate in the organization every year. In this year's marathon, 160 athletes from 34 countries will participate out of which only nine people will participate in the half-marathon category," he said.
Vahapoğlu said she would represent the Turkish flag to the best of her ability.
"The increased running performance and my belief in the last years have made me feel ready for the race this year. I signed up as the first Turkish participant in the Everest marathon which has been running for 14 years now," she said.
"I would like to thank the president of Turkey and his wife Emine Erdoğan, the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the 'Sport for Everyone' Federation for their support and contribution," she added.
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