The “Brooks Run Happy” running race took place this morning flagging off at the Big Splash, East Coast Park, with three categories, comprising of the 10km and a 21km competitive categories as well as a 5km Fun Run.
The race route was quite simple. The 21km route took runners from the starting line at the Big Splash towards the National Service Resort and Country Club, then to Carpark B1, and then back to where they had come from.
The 10km route brought runners from the Big Splash towards the East Coast Lagoon Ski Park before returning to the starting line.
The 5km Fun Run took runners from the Big Splash area to Carpark C2, before running towards Carpark B1 and then back to the Big Splash.
Brooks hoped to have runners feeling “carefree and casual” while running
This race had been called “Run Happy” because this is the motto of Brooks – a sports apparel and footwear company. With this motto, Brooks’ main aim was to provide runners today, with the best and most comfortable running gear to ensure that they remained comfortable and stayed happy from one mile to the next – when they were running.
So Brooks had aimed for their race today, to be a “carefree and casual” run.
A lovely race route by the sea with beautiful views
And many of the participants taking part in the 21km race were certainly running happily with passion and love, this morning.
Said school director Caroline Meek, 38, “It was a fabulous and very fun race! We had a lovely race route by the sea with great views, good atmosphere and plenty of water and hydration – that is very important with the hot weather and humidity in Singapore. The pacers were also very good and friendly and they encouraged me. This is a highly recommended race!”
Meek had been following the 1hour 50minute pace group and she admitted that they overtook her towards the end of the race. But she added, “I kept them in sight and finished only a minute behind them. But they really motivated me. Thank you, 1.50hour pacers!”
The finishing line was also quite interesting to Meek. She said, “I live close to East Coast Park and this is my training ground. I have done a lot of half marathons… but this is the first one that I have done, with live chickens greeting me at the end!”
Run was well organised
Eric Wichman, 38, a Vice-President at Barclays Bank, had also enjoyed the race and had thought that the run was very well organised. Said Wichman, “It was a well organised race and the spacing was good – with the pathways not being congested. But maybe that’s because less people joined this race.”
He continued, “I also loved the route – I run up and down East Coast Park quite often and find it very peaceful and therapeutic – maybe except for when the music is playing from the loudspeakers! You can simply forget about everything else and focus on running.”
The early starting time of 5.30am for the 21km category also suited Wichman perfectly. He said, “I have run races that start later, and halfway through, the sun comes out and that is an absolute killer. I prefer to finish at sunrise or earlier.”
A therapeutic and peaceful location for running
Also finding East Coast Park a very therapeutic location was Reuben Harword, a 28-year-old researcher. He said, “This was one of the rare times that I was running at East Coast Park. I usually run up in the North, at Punggol Park, but as a running location, East Coast Park is great. I can see exactly why a lot of people come here to run. The scenery is very therapeutic and I was looking down most of the time, but I really enjoyed the location.”
Harword admitted though, that he had found the 21km distance challenging. He said, “It was a very tough race for me. I got to the 15km mark and everything from there on, felt uphill to me, even though East Coast Park is very flat. I have not run 21km for a while, so it was certainly more difficult than a lot of the 10km races that I am used to running.”
“But I enjoyed the challenge and I would take part in another 21km again,” added Harword.
A fast and flat course
However, for Alex Conrad, 17, the running route at Brooks Run Happy was a very fast and flat course. Said the Grade 12 United World College student, “East Coast Park is really fast and flat and I quite enjoyed it. I do a few training runs here as well, so the ground is also familiar to me. It’s such a nice place to run, that I would like to say that I run here every week – but it’s probably more like once a month or so!”
But Conrad felt that the distance markers at the race were perhaps not placed as accurately as he would have liked. He said, “It was a very good race. The only problem was that some distance markers were not as accurate as they could have been, especially towards the end. That was a little confusing because you can’t really use them as a gauge to see if you are on target with your running pace.”
Despite that though, Conrad managed to meet his timing goal of completing the race in less than 1hour and 40minutes so he had been quite happy with his performance.
Weather was nice and the route was not congested
Added Conrad, “But other than that, the run was very well organised and there were a lot of marshals along the way so it was impossible to get lost while running this race.”
Also having a great time at the race, was Sng Boon Heng, 43, a regional director. He said, “The weather was nice and it was a lot less congested than the usual race, probably because there were less runners taking part.”
According to Sng’s estimations, there were about 2,000 runners participating across the three categories, which works out to be roughly 700 runners per category.
The coconut water was delicious
Sng admitted that what he had enjoyed the most about the race, had been the coconut water available at the hydration stations. He said, “It was too good not to stop for the coconut water! Every time I stopped, I took two cups – that is why I don’t mind my timing being slower than usual today.”
Runners had been generously provided with the coconut water not only at the hydration stations, but also at the end point.
He added, “Overall I definitely enjoyed the race and it was a good tempo run for me. I should definitely run this next year again – if the drink sponsor is the same!”