Sundown Marathon 2014: 42km Podium Finisher, Alex Ong

Winners of the 2014 Sundown Marathon. 42km Category, Men's. From left to right. Singaporean Alex Ong (second), American Russell Ericksen (winner) and Briton Thomas Greene (third).

Winners of the 2014 Sundown Marathon. 42km Category, Men’s. From left to right. Alex Ong (second), Russell Ericksen (champion), Thomas Greene (third) and Adrian Mok (founder of Hivelocity, Sundown Marathon organiser) [Image: Sundown Marathon]

He was using this race as a form of training for the Gold Coast Marathon in July. So to 27-year-old PE teacher Alex Ong, his 42.195km second-placed finish at 2014’s Sundown Marathon was a surprise to him.

Said Alex, who had completed the Full Marathon in three hours and 50 seconds, “The podium finish was indeed a pleasant surprise. The aim was to clock a good training run to prepare for the Gold Coast Marathon.”

Didn’t have much of a strategy

According to Alex, he didn’t really have much of a strategy for the race.

“I was nursing a calf strain at the start, so I just told myself to be careful of not aggravating it,” he said.

Mentally Challenging

The difficult unlit stretches of the route, such as the rather dark section at East Coast Park were particularly challenging to Alex.

He said, “Running along the unlit stretches of the route was quite mentally challenging.

“It was kind of depressing and I kept asking myself why I was running when I should be sleeping!” he added.

The Benjamin Sheares Bridge not so difficult

Surprisingly though, he felt that the Benjamin Sheares Bridge stretch towards the end of the Full Marathon, termed as “Heartbreak Bridge” – a tough uphill battle for some Sundown Marathon runners – was not too difficult.

Said Alex, “I didn’t think it (the bridge) was that bad actually. When there’s an upslope, there’s always a downslope.

“So while going up may be difficult, I knew that I could compensate for the loss of time when coming down,” he added.

Compared to last year’s race though, where he came in third, Alex felt that this year’s Sundown Marathon was more challenging, as a whole. He said, “The weather felt warmer and more humid. The route was also slightly different, with the addition of Sheares Bridge.”

A night well spent

As a whole, Alex is pleased with the way that he had spent the wee hours of the morning.

He said, “No offence, but I felt that my night was better spent, when I watched the throngs of partygoers coming out from Marina Bay Sands (MBS) and the Fullerton Hotel.”

More on Sundown Marathon

My Sundown 2014 Race Experience

Other Blog Posts

Running Sundown Marathon Barefooted

Sundown Marathon Tips by Veteran Adrian Mok

Sundown Marathon: Visit to Klipsch Singapore



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