Sunday, February 26, 2012


U Run + Vertical Climb 2012 Start - Photo Credit Racers' Toolbox

This year’s U Run + Vertical Climb was quite special as we managed to gather quite a large group of FatBirds to participate in all categories of 10km+Vertical Climb, 10km and 5km Runs. Because of a more than doubling of participation, especially for the Vertical Climb Challenge, the organizers planned the start in waves and the end points for the CLIMB to be different than the 10km and 5km. Thus, we had a nice scenic run with nary an obstruction around the Esplanade, Nicholl Highway and Marina Bay areas.

Blast Off! - Photo Credit Run Society

Because of last year’s congestion for the climb up One Marina Boulevard (OMB) Towers, the organizers provided 2 access routes up, which made it a lot less congested this time round. A number of FatBirds for the RUN+CLIMB were early for the 7:00am Wave 1 flagoff, with some cool warmup by Amore Fitness instructors. Ong Ye Kung did the honours of flagging off, and away I went at about 4:30min/km. I was careful not to push the cardio too hard, but still maintain a reasonable pace to be running with a smallish group. Drinks stations of 2km apart was well stocked with Pocari Sweat, and by 4km I was pretty settled down. With the 30-storeys at the end in mind, I maintained some reserves for the finish, taking care not to go below 4:30min/km pace.

getting into the groove - Photo Credit Ng Chee Beng

There were many familiar faces and shouts of encouragement as we returned and met the oncoming runners along Nicholl Highway…the JMs, U Run groupies, FatBirds, SgRunners and other running friends – taking photos on the run. I was with an interesting group of 3, 1 tall Ang Moh, 1 VFF runner and another ‘botak’…we ran pretty much together till the end. By the 8km mark, we were back at start point/Floating Platform, and were ushered to climb the uphill MBS bridge…that pretty much took the final wind out of me, and I dropped the pace to 4:40min/km thereafter. With the OMB Tower in sight, I maintained a slower pace to finish the 10km with some spare.

6km mark along Nicholl Highway - Photo Credit JM BTing

Waving to JMs along Nicholl Highway - Photo Credit JM BTing

When my Garmin buzzed 10km, I started to walk towards the tower.  A few other runners too started to walk to suck in air for the ‘climb’. The cheerleaders were telling us to keep running, but that was the only opportunity for us to recharge before the climb. It was an arduous way up, although the steps were not steep and the stairway was pretty clear. However, the ventilation was not as good, and each time we pass the air vents, it was a pleasure to just suck in. I contemplated taking a breather midway by the side, but there just wasn’t too much space around. I decided to just proceed upwards to end the agony early. However, I was not too winded this time when I reached the top, given that I took single steps most of the time…haha.

Closing in for the finish - Photo Credit AC Leong

Still, it was great to finish at the top with the cool breeze blowing at our faces, and we could suck in deep all the air we were so deprived along the stairwell. I took the first bus back to Floating Platform with Ngee Hung and Gary, both of whom did so well to finish way ahead, and Gary even secured a good podium finish.  Collection of the finisher goodie bag and tee shirt was no hassle. The Finisher Tee was nice, much better than the men's race vest which was quite wierdly-cut.  By the time I got changed, Beverly and Amanda were just coming in for their 5km 8:30am start.

I proceeded to the end point to wait for the runners and had good chats with JJ, Ngee Hung and tekko. It was great to see the 10km runners finishing, and a number of familiar faces and friends with podium finishes and good timings. Swee Heng did a very fast 49min, and the others did well too. Thow Wee secured a 1st placing for corporate…wow!  Congrats also to XiuFang for her podium finish, and Danny, Diana, Erlina on their solid 10km runs.  Soon, Beverly finished her 5km with Amanda.  Met up with them and continued to catch up with old running kakis like Jancy, Vincent and tekko.

2012's Results

  RK    BIB           NAME               10KM              CLIMB            GUN           NETT
   34    1066    Anthony Sum       0:46:36.90        0:08:48.93      0:55:25.83     0:55:11.56
2011's Results

My timing for this year was slower than last year's by 15sec...haha, not bad for an enjoyable run without any run nor climb training at all.

I felt the race experience and organization was much better this year, with less congestion and a more solid-footed end point. There were some queues for the OMB bus-ferry and baggage points, but I guess those would be areas for improvement for next year. I feel it is a good value-for-$$ run, and barring any clashes with other events, we will be back for next year’s race.

Related Posts with Thumbnails


Post a Comment

<< Home