Date:21 November 2010
This is my 2nd year taking part in the Penang Bridge Marathon.This year we decided to fly to Penang and we are thankful to Gopalan and his wife,Ronisa for fetching us from the airport and also for the dinner in Queensbay Mall.
*L-R:my youngest daughter Jacyntha,my wife Juliet,Ronisa,her youngest daughter and Gopalan
After the dinner,I checked into Eastin Hotel while my wife and daughter went out shopping with Ronisa.I tried to get some sleep but unable to since it wasn't my usual sleeping hour.Instead, I spent the night watching English Premier League match between Arsenal and Spurs.It was an exciting match where Spurs being 2 goals down, came back to win the match 3-2!!
When I was about to sleep at 11pm,my wife came back from shopping.Finally only managed to get half and hour nap before getting ready for the marathon.
At 1.30am, I walked to the starting point at the Queensbay Mall.There were many runners and I was trying to look out for the Seremban group.Only managed to see Lim,Eric and my friend Tham from Sungai Petani.
*The starting of the full marathon at 2.00am.This year there wasn't a lion dance before the race but during the starting of the race.
- The strategy for this year PBIM....to run a better race compared to last year.So I decided to follow the 4:30 hour pacers and if I can't maintain the pace later in the race then at least I hope to achieve a sub 5h finishing time.
- Midway up the Penang Bridge,Heng overtook me and we chit-chat for a few minutes.We were talking about running ultra marathon in the coming Sundown 2011.Then Heng sped off leaving me wondering why everyone from the Seremban group was running so fast.
- The rain slowed down to drizzle after I exited from the bridge.I was feeling fresh and cool after the heavy shower.I was still feeling strong so I decided to run a bit faster along the Jelutong Expressway.In order to concentrate on my pace/run,I kept on focusing 3 metres in front of me.I tried not to look side ways as not to be disturbed by the negative scenes like runners walking,having cramps,stopping or sitting.
Francis was on his way back towards Queensbay Mall when he noticed me.He was cheering me.I noticed it was already 3 hours 11 minutes into our race.Seems like he won't able to do a PB time but sure it would be a sub 4h finishing.
- Then the U turn at the end of the expressway and runners were heading back to the finishing line.This was the last stretch of the race and I was still feeling good and strong.No impending cramp but slight muscle ache.I took my final packet of Power gel and one bananas.I was feeling excited as I knew the end was near.Yesudian called out my name when our path cross not far from the U turn.
- Suddenly it came across my mind that I have not seen any of my Seremban group runners after exiting from the bridge except Francis.They must be way ahead of me.
*The picture taken near the finishing line by Kho.Thanks for his effort.The link is http://picasaweb.google.com/khokl74
- Then the nightmare came....at about 2 km from the finishing line,there was a massive crowd of runners who have just started the 10km fun run.Most of them were walking and they had taken up the entire road.I had to run at the side of the road and trying hard to avoid colliding into them.
Few full marathoners were seen shouting on top of their voice at the 10km runners for blocking their (full marathoners)path.One of them was a 4:30h pacer.I briefly told her to continue running instead of wasting time and energy shouting.
- Personally I feel that we as full marathoners shouldn't be so proud or think that we are the special breed and other runners need to respect or gave way to us.10km or 42km...we are all runners.Please don't shout at others.
*The picture taken by my wife from our hotel room.The massive crowd of 10km runners..I heard there were 10,000 10 km runners!!
The best part was running toward the finishing line.There wasn't a big crowd lining up near the finishing line as compared to last year probably because it was raining.Again,I saw Francis cheering me near the finishing line.Eh..where were the rest of the Seremban runners??
- After collecting my medal and finisher T,I went around looking for my wife and the rest of my group.Only managed to see Tham who finished with time of 4h 38min.His initial target was to do a sub 4h marathon.
- Went around the event main area for half an hour looking for friends but can't see anyone so decided to go to the FM tent for the complimentary breakfast.There were plenty of foods-beehun,mee,eggs,apples,drinks etc.
*Buying foods from the stalls in front of Queenbays Mall....a bad decision!!The food was expensive and they sold me 2 packets of stale nasi lemak.
- Went back to hotel room for a bath and clean up.Then received a call from Lau asking about our group results.
- There was still a big crowd of runners waiting despite the rain.Everyone was hoping to get a free gift.This year there were fewer prizes in the lucky draw.The main prize was a Proton Saga car.The secand was a motorcycle follow by air ticket to Guangzhou and air ticket to Macau.No free holidays vouchers or hotel vouchers.
- The S2 group results:
- The good points of PBIM:
- The bad points of PBIM:
4)Inexperience pacers...many stories about 4h pacers from Eric.Personally I think the 4:30h pacers also did not achieve their aim
- Finally..Thanks PBIM for the experience.Hopefully will return again next year if my running group decided to join.