Sunday, June 08, 2008

Saucony Passion Run 2008

After participating in the highly successful inaugural Saucony Passion Run in 2007, I had registered early for this year's race, and was looking forward to doing the 15km distance. Since this was a week after my Sundown 84km Ultra-Marathon, I was prepared to just participate and enjoy this recovery run.

Bev, DO and myself arrived at ECP Carpark E2 at 5.30am. That gave us some time to check out the SgRunners and Saucony booths, say hello and catch up with friends and running kakis. It was good to meet our SCSM07 captain David Tay, who was waxing lyrical about his new Saucony Sinister. I was introduced to the Saucony Fast Twitch light trainers...hmm, quite tempted to try...will see how. DO and I took a short warm up jog, met up with Kien Mau to talk about a running seminar he is putting up, before proceeding to the start point.

The run started promptly at 6.30am for those of us in the Men's Open wave 1. Because I have been used to running slower paces in preparation for Sundown, I have not gotten used to running at about 5min/km pace over longer stretches. I kicked into quite a fast gear, following DO, Trevor, Ayin at a distance. I felt that we were going below 5min/km, and by 3km, I was already huffing and puffing...waah, jialat! IMD and TLR came along quite fast and ran ahead after 2km. The weather was cool but I was feeling thirsty from the heavy breathing. I told myself to keep up the pace, and was able to sustain to the 5km U-turn point. Time check was, what's wrong with the pace? Gotta check the distance markers..hmm

Trevor and group had ran quite far ahead. I had overtaken DO and his group by the 3km mark, and was pretty alone from 5km. At the 6km mark, I ran ahead of Ayin. I could feel 1-2 people behind me, but didn't really bother. Runners from the other wave were seen on the other side, and quite a number of people called out to me. I just waved haphazardly to acknowledge, while keeping my eyes in front to watch out for the strolling crowd. Runalone went past me at the 7km mark, and I waved him on.

I was already feeling the strains on my legs, and I knew that those who did 84km last Saturday still have not recovered. I trailed Runalone from 100m, and he just kept up the pace. Very good SAFRA supporters lined up along the way. Alvin and gang, Jaime and her group, Bug, Fennel...I am sure there were a lot more whom I did not have time to acknowledge....thanks guys and gals. I spotted the Sotong family near the Cable Ski area, but did not have the energy to shout out to them. I concentrated on pushing on till I went past the start was great to have all the loud cheers!

It was with great resolve that I maintained pace till the 10km mark. The inaccurate distance markers threw me off a couple of times...I thought I was running above 5min pace at certain stretches, in spite of the perceived effort of sub-5min. I was pretty alone from 10km to 12km, trying my best to just sustain the pace. Runalone had moved up to 300m in front...I was slowing already. With just 3km to go, there was a challenge from a young tri-althelete who was in good form. I was not in shape to give him a 'fight' and just had to let him run ahead....sorry young man, maybe next time...hehe. At least he impressed the gals quite a bit...good for him!

With 1km to go, my legs were going soft. The glycogen tank was at its low point. I could see the meandering crowd in front, and I just kept in up. A biker rode up and asked me to keep it up and that I was one of the front pack...haha....wonder how he figured that out. Then it was 500m...cheers and screams could be heard. I picked up speed...could see hunky ...Kk... in front. Ran up to him and gave him a high-5, before turning into the finishing stand. I took a quick look behind to ensure there were no one to sneak up, before raising my arms and striding slowly across the finish in 1hr12min+. I hope I finished slow enough for a good photo shot...haha. I was glad the hard run was over.

After I collected my finisher's medal and goody bag, I went back to the finish to welcome back Ayin, Prata, DO, David Shum, and a couple more. We went to the SgRunner's booth to catch up with TLR, IMD and the rest who had returned earlier. Fitness Network's Maverick did a good race and he came up to say hello with fellow I-Run runners.

DO and I proceeded to do a nice wash-up, and we were on time to see Vivian Tang finishing first for the Women's 15km...super. I took my camera out and had a field day shooting from the finish line, of friends, kakis, hunks and babes who were finishing. It was quite fun to be a supporter and photographer. Overall, a nice run and outing, with good weather, great race organization. I will be back for Saucony Passion Run 2009.

Official Results (Men's Open 15km)
47 1360 ANTHONY SUM YEW WAH COMPETITIVE MENS OPEN 15KM 00:24:34 01:00:49 01:12:20

Distance: 15km__Shoes: Asics DS Racer
Time: 1hr12min20sec__Pace: 4:49min/km

Saucony Passion Run 2008 - Photo Slideshow

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