Oldest marathon runner is hanging up sneakers at age 101


Indian-born British national Fauja Singh looks on during a press conference in Hong Kong on February 21, 2013. The 101-year-old Sikh regarded as the world's oldest marathon runner said he was "hurt" over his retirement plan as he feared people will forget him, ahead of his last race to take place in Hong Kong on February 24.



The world's oldest marathon runner is hanging up his sneakers after finishing his last race at the age 101, reports ESPN.

Fauja Singh ran the 10 kilometer Hong Kong marathon wearing a saffron turban with his long white beard blowing in the breeze.

"I will remember this day. I will miss it," Singh said minutes after crossing the finish line with a time of 1 hour, 32 minutes and 28 seconds.

In a pre-race interview he told AP, "I am feeling a bit of happiness and a bit of sadness mixed together. I am happy that I am retiring at the top of the game but I am sad that the time has come for me to not be part of it."

"And there will always be times in the future where I will be thinking, `Well, I used to do that (running)," the Punjabi-speaking Singh said through his coach and interpreter, Harmander Singh.

Nicknamed the Turbaned Tornado, Singh became the oldest runner to complete a full marathon in Toronto 2011 at the age of 100 but did not qualify for the Guinness World Records because he does not have a birth certificate.

AP reports that Singh has a British passport that shows his date of birth as April 1, 1911.

According to Sky News, the great-great-grandfather didn't start running until he moved to the UK from India at the age 89. His wife and son had died and he said he needed a new focus in life.

Since then, Singh has completed nine 26-mile marathons in London, Toronto and New York. His best time was 5 hours and 40 minutes at the 2003 Toronto marathon.

Last year, Singh was selected to run as a torchbearer during the London Olympics.

"I feel that I must retire on a high. I will not stop running, but will do it for my personal health."