Jakarta, Indonesia, July 1, 2018: The Olympic Council of Asia’s 18th Asian Games Fun Run Series came “home” to Indonesia on Sunday with events held in co-host cities Jakarta and Palembang. With 5,000 runners in Jakarta and 2,000 in Palembang, capital of South Sumatra province, the public showed their support for the 18th Asian Games, which will run from August 18 to September 2.
The Jakarta fun run was flagged off by Puan Maharani, Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Cultural Affairs and grand-daughter of the republic’s first president, Soekarno. “I am very happy to see so many people supporting the Asian Games Fun Run for Indonesia, with 5,000 here in Jakarta and another 2,000 in Palembang,” said Puan Maharani.
“This is a good sign as we prepare for the Opening Ceremony on August 18. I am optimistic that the Indonesian people will support the Asian Games. I am looking forward to attending the Games and watching as many sports as I can.”
This will be the second time Indonesia has hosted the Asian Games and the first since Jakarta served as the sole host for the fourth edition in 1962, for which the country’s founding father and first president Soekarno ordered the construction of the Gelora Bung Karno sports complex in Senayan.
On Sunday, the 5km route took runners around the vast parkland complex and the venues that have been renovated for the 18th Asian Games.
“It is a form of international trust that Indonesia is hosting the Asian Games again after 56 years,” added Puan Maharani. “It is also an opportunity to show the venues to the public.” Puan said the large turnout of runners, sponsors and media had created a festival atmosphere and showed that Asian Games fever was building.
"This is a social event to promote the Asian Games and I would like to thank the community for taking part and creating a very friendly atmosphere,” she said.
“It also shows that Indonesia, as the host, is ready the hold the Asian Games 2018. We want to organise it successfully and implement all the plans and preparations.” In Palembang, the Fun Run was held in Jakabaring Sports City, which includes all the competition venues and Athletes’ Village, and was flagged off by the Governor of South Sumatra, Mr Alex Noerdin.
According to Mr Muddai Maddang, Vice President of the Indonesian Olympic Committee, 2,120 people joined the 6.8km run. INASGOC was also represented by Mr Harry Warganegara, Deputy 1 for Games Operation, while the OCA was represented by Mr Jeans Zhou Jian, Media Manager.
The OCA is organising over 30 Fun Runs around the continent in cooperation with the National Olympic Committees, and participants receive souvenir T-shirts, certificates and medals.