Runners & walkers hit the road to celebrate Visakha Bucha Day

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City Hall and the Pattaya Walking and Jogging Club teamed up to jointly organize this year’s walking, jogging and meditation activities on the Buddhist celebration of Visakha Bucha Day, Friday, May 20.

Some 500 budding sportsmen and women, both young and old, took part in the event held at the Pratumnak fitness-park in south Pattaya.  The aim was to encourage members of the public to engage in exercise for good health as well as to make merit by listening to Buddhist teachings and sermons and make the ritual circuit of the Wat Chaimongkol Phra Arramluang temple.

Buddhist monks from the priest house at Phra Yai mountain lead the runners and walkers in a procession down Pratumnak Road to Wat Chiamongkol temple.

This year’s activities were divided into three parts: a 5km jog/run, a 3km walkathon and a ceremonial procession or Wian Tian (walking around the temple three times).

The route for the walkathon and jogging events started in front of the TAT Pattaya Office before climbing the hill and completing a full circuit of the Pratumnak peninsula, eventually ending up back at the start point.  The races were separated into 6 age and gender related categories.  City officials Wattana Chanthanawaranont and Dr Weerawat Khakhai, co-presided over the opening ceremony and sent the runners and walkers on their way.

For men aged not more than 39 years old, the winner was Thatchapol Sirikanchana ahead of first runner-up Chatree Lertphukiew and second runner-up Atichart Sumanas.

Young runners pound a beat on Pattaya fitness park to celebrate Visakha Bucha Day.

In the men aged 40 years old and up category, the winner was Victorio of the Pattaya Team while the first runner-up was Saneh Kiewsantia and the second runner-up Satien Pakalow.

Unchalee Klapajone came first in the women aged not more than 34 years old division and was followed onto the podium by Saowaluck Boonwan and second runner-up Nittaya Sriraksa.

Pattaya deputy mayor Wattana Chanthanawaranont (right) presents a trophy to Victorio of the Pattaya Team, winner of the male over 40 years of age race category.

For women, aged 35 years old up, the winner was Nattiya Sangkhetkitch while Rujira Nantha placed second and Juthamas Prachumchai came in third.

In the youth categories, aged not more than 15 years old, Nabin Anan won the boys race ahead of Thanathorn Kamwan and Saharat Wongrattanachart, while the girls winner was Ksenia Akhanova who was followed up the podium steps by Sirilaila Patyenjai and Sarida Nathapradit in that order.

After the trophy presentations and closing ceremonies, the sportsmen and women gathered at Wat Chaimongkol Phra Arramluang temple in south Pattaya to make merit and celebrate Visakha Bucha Day with other followers of the Buddhist religion.