Date: 14 July 2013
Venue: Hat Yai, Thailand
Distance: 10.5km (Garmin: 10.35km)
Timing: 53:24 min (Garmin)
Pace: 5:09 min/km (Garmin)
Result: 3rd AG
Small local race put up the Faculty of Management Science (FMS) of Prince of Songkhla University and sponsored by amongst others, Siam Commercial Bank. This was the inaugural event attended by most of the local runners from Hat Yai and the surrounding towns, provinces. On tap was the competitive 10.5km and a Fun Run of 3km (although they did award prizes to the top 3 finishers). Out-and-back course starting from FMS and taking the same route as the Nature Run put up by the Department of Computer Science (about 150m away). Flag off was at 6am for the 10.5km followed by the 3km about 15 minutes later.
Small field. How small? Row4-5 is about the most-est back I could do. Small field also meant I could take it easy since I ran the DH with Zhen Qi and Fong the previous day. Ok, maybe that’s why the hips were killing me for the rest of Sunday!
The exact same route as the Nature Run although we ran on the road parallel to the main street within the compound of the school – best decision ever! Gentle downhill heading to the school, straight out long the front of the school, right turn into the main road. First hydration station about 2km in.
The rollers along the route and the race leaders were spotted around km4.5 (or maybe less) – that was how slow I was! One hydration station around km4. 1 more km before the turnaround/checkpoint where you collect a rubberband.
Gak! 2 things: (1) crossing the road onto the same side where you ran in the first half – thank goodness for zero-to-light traffic (2) nearly stepped onto a dead monitor lizard! Or whatever that carcass that looked like a lizard. Back in the school compound – thank goodness! And that “gentle downward slope” in the beginning = looming long 500-800m of indescribable pain and misery. If that wasn’t enough, was passed by a woman in the 50+ category. I hang my head in shame! Got over the hill and zoom downwards towards the finishing chute.
a) Great organization.
b) Love the Thai hospitality – volunteers and marshals were so helpful with replies to my queries and when they found out I’m from abroad, one of the guys even escorted me to the prize wait area.
c) Marshals along the route and u-turn were great – directing and stopping traffic and the motorists do not get cheesed off, impatient or start honking at you!
d) Cheap-o registration fee (THB250) and in return you get a tee, finisher’s medal and post run grub.
e) Registration up to the morning of the run.
f) Lots of post run grub for brekkie, as is usual for Thai events.
a) No road closure as is typical of most Malaysian and Thai races (perhaps only for major events). Since this was a Sunday and along a secondary road, traffic was light and whenever a vehicle was spotted, the marshals directed them to slow down or halt. The only bit I didn’t like was running across the road midway in the second half to get onto the same side as the run out.
b) Not time chipped – not that I expected since this is really a small race.
c) No distance markers though you could spot the occasional chalk markings for the Nature Run – same route and I guess you could more or less figure it out.