An event apart from the rest, the 9th annual cycling event held on July 20 ended on a successful note
Being termed as a ‘mass ride for charity’, Kora KTM 2019, which was held on July 20 ended on a successful note. Enthusiastic cyclists from all over Nepal gathered in front of Patan Durbar Square for the Cycling festival, this being the 9th year of Kora KTM. The event was held in five cities of Nepal: Surkhet, Nepalgunj, Butwal, Hetauda and Kathmandu. It was also scheduled to take place in Dharan but was delayed due to the floods.
Kora, in Buddhism and Hinduism, is a circumambulation, done clockwise, usually around a religious structure. Keeping this in mind, the organisers of Kora KTM put together this cycling event. Raj Gyawali from socialtours, the Chief Organiser of Kora, said it could be called a cycle Jatra much akin the Kumari Jatra. This is because since the inception of the event nine years back, the same route has been taken by all cyclists. This cycling event is more than just an annual sporting event — it is a cycling festival. A Click 2 win contest was also held, where the top photograph of the event will be chosen and the photographer will win one ticket to any destination of choice in Europe, sponsored by Turkish Airlines.
A total of 2600 cyclists pedaled along the roads of Kathmandu on July 20. The event was held in three phases: 50 k, 75k and 100 k. For the 50 k the started from Patan Durbar Square, to Kirtipur via Chhobar, into Naikap, behind Swayambhunath, the White Stupa, then to Balaju water gardens, and then Manamaiju, Dhapasi, over the road into Budanilkantha towards Boudha. A lunch stop is made at Boudha and then the cyclists finally circle back towards Patan Durbar Square from behind the airport and Pepsi Cola. The 75 k and the 100 k had more technical variations of this ride, and of course longer distances.
Although the registration was free, the cyclists were still encouraged to raise at least Rs 100 per km. All proceeds from the event were to go toward Richa Foundation, a cancer organisation dedicated to help Nepali women with ovarian cancer and breast cancer. The event successfully reached its target of Rs 600,000!
What sets such an event apart is the values of community inclusiveness it inculcates and spreads. The event was for a much greater cause – a cause for humanity. What more, over 40 companies joined hands in making the event a successful one. With support from VNY 2020, Turkish Airlines, Nepal Mediciti Hospital providing ambulance and Himalayan General Insurance insuring all riders against any accidents, the event was run by minds alike. Cycling companies were providing water at all stops. Moreover, it was the people who interacted with riders on the way that made the event all the more fruitful.
Despite rainfall, all enthusiastic cyclists continued riding, thus showing their dedication and fervour. All participants circled back to Patan Museum where the atmosphere was filled with cheer and pride for having successfully been a part of such a good cause. All participants were also given gold medals. The event was graced by Deepak Bajracharya, the famous Nepali singer who added that he would love to be a part of the event the following year.
Arzoo, a cyclist attending the event for the fourth time in a row said, “It is such a fun and joyous event. I enjoy it because I get to ride with my friends and moreover it is for a greater cause.”
Such events showcase how there are people all over the world who believe in the greater good. Kora 2019 in all its glory gives Nepal something to be proud of!