Runners Convention 2016: The MacRitchie Run

This morning, the MacRitchie Run took place. Organised as part of the 2016 Runners Convention by the TLC (Train Live Compete) Group, the run comprised of three categories. These were a 5.5km run, a 31.5km one as well as a three-member team 31.5km relay – meaning that each member of a team was required to run 10.5km.

Runners pose for the camera before the race starts.

Runners posing for the camera before the race starts.

Runners ran around the MacRitchie Reservoir Park

Beginning at the Lornie Road area of Singapore’s iconic MacRitchie Reservoir, the 31.5km run required runners to complete three loops around the MacRitchie Reservoir Park trails.

For the 31.5km Relay, each member of the team competed one loop.

They are off!

They are off!

The 5.5km fun run was a quick dash through the Lornie Trails and back to the starting point.

An interesting route with fast runners

Runners who were taking part in the event, had a great time. Said Kim Tham, 34, a Manager at the Singapore Sports Hub, “It was great! The people were nice. It was an interesting route and the weather was also great. The runners were also very fast today, so that made for good competition.”

Tham took part in the 31.5km Relay. She said, “I didn’t want to do too long a distance today, because I have a 100km run in Hong Kong later this month. My friends needed a female runner in the relay so I just joined them for fun.”

A runner relaxes after completing his run.

A runner relaxing after completing his run.

At the same time, she admitted that she had also wanted to support the race organiser, who was a friend of hers. Said Tham, “So I thought it would be an interesting concept to do a relay here because this is a place that I come to train at regularly.”

She enjoyed her inaugural trail running experience

Also finding the run interesting was first-time trail runner Celia Lim, 53. Said the Clinic Nurse in Oncology, “It was an interesting experience! I have not run trail at all so this was my first try. It was quite tough in the trail because I normally run on the roads. But I liked the experience and I will come back for it!”

Runners smile for the camera.

Runners smiling for the camera.

Lim took part in the 5.5km category and she generally found the organisation and logistics to be pretty good. She said, “The organisation was okay, except that the information dissemination may have been lacking. There was a general starting time and a map stated on the website, but there could have been something more specific. But otherwise everything was good.”

Race Organisation and logistics were good

Also finding the organisation and logistics good, was Khng Hwee Hoon, 44, an Operations Manager at A-Star Research Institute. She said, “The organisation was good! As this was a small-scale race, I also enjoyed it because of the camaraderie. You get to see all of your friends and there’s not so many people to clog up the trails. As such, members of the public who were doing their daily walks or runs on the trails were not so frustrated with us, as they may be during big events held here.”

She added, “We also had random strangers on the trails cheering us on during the race. They did not disrupt us and we did not disrupt their morning walks because there wasn’t so many of us. This was good – as everyone is part of the same community of nature and trail lovers after all, regardless of whether we were walking, running or racing.”

A happy runner!

A happy runner!

However, Khng, who took part in the 31.5km Relay, found the run itself to be pressurising. She said, “I normally run here on my own in a very relaxed manner and to simply enjoy myself. But because I was doing a relay today, I had to run fast.”

MacRitchie Reservoir was familiar ground

Running at MacRitchie Reservoir regularly was participant Prasant Kannoth, 43, a software programmer in the banking industry. He said, “I normally run at MacRitchie, so today was very familiar ground for me. The climate was very hot and humid though, so that made it a little difficult to run.”

Joy is etched all over his face upon completion of his run.

A happy runner after the finish line.

Kannoth, who took part in the 31.5km Relay, thought the organisers had done well. He said, “Today’s organisation was good but since it was a trail run, they had a lot of limitations from the National Parks Board, such as not being able to have water points in the middle of the trails. For us relay runners it was still okay, but the 31.5km people might need extra arrangement because they may get dehydrated if they did not get enough water.”

More water stations would have been nice

Agreeing with him was Bernard Kiplamgat, 39, a professional athlete from Kenya. He said, “There was only one water station along the route. Though I realised that they are not allowed to put them in the middle of the trails, it would have been nice if there was one, every three to five kilometres.”

Runners are resting at the race village.

Runners resting at the race village.

Kiplamgat, who ran in the 31.5km Category, had taken part in the MacRitchie Run as a warm-up training session for the Taiwan Marathon next month. Today marked his first time running in Singapore and at the MacRitchie trails. He said, “This was my first time running in this forest with Singapore people. There were no escorts and as a result, sometimes I didn’t know which way to turn.”

But despite that, he still had a great time. Said Kiplamgat, “This was my first time doing trail running and it was very tough! But I enjoyed it and would come back to Singapore to run again.”

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