This seemed like a wonderfully timed race. It was adequately far out from IVP (and time trials), it gave me some time to work on faster running and it was just before the onset of a very hectic Paediatric posting. An important element included the cause - all collections from registration fees were to be contributed to the United Nations World Food Programme.
I was also expecting a fast course around Gardens By the Bay. Then I found out that the route was a little more challenging than I had expected.
There were two loops up and down the Marina Barrage. In addition, due to numerous construction activities, there were many turns that would be effective in breaking momentum. Furthermore, there were two narrow hairpin turns to be made, within a matter of about 10m, which would definitely cost a couple of a seconds.
On race day, the sky was overcast and a drizzle had began by the time I arrived at the starting venue. Thankfully, it did not progress! With the monsoon season providing (nearly) daily downpours, we were fortunate that the race was not cancelled or delayed.
|Hold up please. Credit to Pink Apple Events.|
It was a very small race. I did see a few familiar faces. I caught up with Desmond at the start pen. From my estimates, there were barely a few hundred runners. There was an awful amount of space right at the front. I did notice a few fast looking individuals. I was hoping that I could tag along to someone running a sub-39. The race began.
A lead pack of about 5 runners sped off into the front. A few others ran in isolation, ahead of me. I plodded along at a safe pace, probably around 4min/km. I slowly caught on to a few runners, but a sizeable group was still in the lead pack. I found myself running along, certainly not what I was hoping for.
After the initial few km, a runner in green was beginning to fall back. He was never within the lead pack in the first place. Slowly but surely I knew I was catching him. Eventually, I did pass him as we climbed the first loop of Marina Barrage. I was still pretty comfortable.
Thereafter, I found myself running alone. Yet I was joined by an event cyclist, whom I was extremely thankful for. As to why he decided to provide me with company, I had no idea. I was certainly not within the podium placings.
Eventually came the U-turn as I ran against the runners heading out. It was a very scattered field, yet I appreciated the shouts of encouragement en route. My cyclist was reminding runners to keep to their lefts. As I looked at the distance markers and the time on my watch, I was wondering whether a sub-39 was possible. Nonetheless, I acknowledged that my Garmin was tracking a distance that fell slightly short of the distance markers, hence an accurate distance was slightly questionable.
It wasn't long before the second loop of Marina Barrage was to be ascended. The mentality by this time was a little aggressive as I tackled the uphill and tried my best to work hard during the descent. I was getting really uncomfortable now, yet more accustomed to the rapid breathing due to the recent track workouts that I had just started.
It wasn't a particularly glorious finish however. No massive kick that I executed, as the route veered off to the left and I wasn't too prepared for that. Upon crossing the Finish, volunteers got me to write down my details and I realised I placed 6th.
|Sorry just gotta say that these are appletising. Credit to Pink Apple (hah hah) Events.|
This was a race that I began slightly conservatively, thus enabling me to run a convincing negative split, with the second half at a pace appropriate for a sub-39 timing. Seems like it eluded me this time, but I know with the upcoming race-pace sessions in store, it'll come (barring any disaster).
|The "1.32km" is probably closer to 1.8k. That's pretty acceptably paced.|
|Strava data available here!|