Sunsari, December 25

Sima Kumari Chaudhary of Far-western Region on Sunday hit the track for the heat rounds of women’s 800 metres race along with four other participants at the Itahari Stadium today.

Chaudhary, who hails from Tikapur of Kailali, caught attention as she was competing in the race on barefoot. She finished second with the timing of two minutes and 32.44 seconds, nearly one second behind Sanu Maya Karki of TAC, who clocked two minutes and 31.40 seconds, and made it to the finals slated for Monday.

The 15-year-old Chaudhary has been provided with the running shoes by her team for the competition but she chose to compete on barefoot as she was not comfortable with the spikes shoes. “I have never worn shoes in any competition and decided not use one in this event as well,” said Chaudhary, who claimed gold medal in the 800m race in the Junior and Youth Championship in Kathmandu last year.

Actually, her parents — father Indra Bahadur Chaudhary and mother Laxmi Devi Chaudhary, who work as daily-wage labours — are not in a position to buy a pair of shoes for her daughter. “My parents cannot afford shoes and I have been competing on barefoot in all the competitions,” said Chaudhary. On Saturday, Gudia Gupta of Western Region ran the 1,500m on barefoot.