Thursday, February 17, 2011

FTAAA Cross Country Run

Now if you're wondering how on earth do you find 'cross country' terrain in the heart of KL, you're not the only one. The course was changed last minute to start from padang merbok, and I couldn't be bothered to look at the map. Will go with the flow and we'll see then if it's the real deal.

By the way, I was disappointed with the only Malaysians regulations stated in the form. When I went for the registration at FTAAA office, I saw a well known fellow runner from Morocco, Ahmed, sitting with his friend pondering on the form to find out where it stated so. It was in malay, and not english. After scrutinizing the fine print, the rule does say so. So I told him, yeah, it's only Malaysians. Then he went on saying he's been working here for some time, and I could feel that he's not happy with the rules.

Now, to understand where this is coming from, I recalled there's a few discussions in the running scene, between top local runners who could have bagged the win, if not for the foreigners, last year. So, somehow, it's becoming to come to this. Our local races are now becoming more inwards rather than welcoming some foreign competitors. And that is a bad thing in the long run. Shunning foreign runners reflects how bad our sportsmanship is, and how some of us, just want to join races and win. But they forgot that not all foreign runners are joining for the sake of winning. They might come here, miles away, just to join a few local races for fun. If you look at the economic aspect, that's good for our tourism.

Well, as for the race, at the start, I managed to edge into 4th placing. I remember Jasni was in front with 2 other indian runners. Then we approached the trails, which was a bit of downhill action, and I had to slow down considerably, to avoid tripping or slipping. I was wearing the racers, and practically there's no traction on the soil. Then I lost my way abit, and another 2 runners passed by. As I came out from the trails, a few hundred meters and it was up a slope. Another runner passed me by.

I was already running at almost full capacity, so I tried to slow down things a little. When we were running at the tarmac, finally I put some speed, but that didn't matter as the front guys, and back guys were not letting up. As we went into the lake gardens, I remember seeing one guy running straight out into the highway. I thought that's odd, and after some direction searching, the correct route was leftwards and up towards the planetarium.

More hills, and more hills at the planetarium before speeding downhill. The chinese dude who was in UM race yesterday was still hot on my heels behind. But I just kept on maintaining the pace and I think he soon dropped off.

Then as went twist and turn around the garden's walkpath, another chinese guy came close and we're running side by side. The route is pretty confusing, and the only markers I could see was plastic ribbons tied on trees. So much for direction. As we ran out into the traffic at the main road, it was then all out. He couldn't catch up, so I knew I was pretty safe.

Finished the race 6th in 0:44:55. I think the leaders were doing 40min.

They were giving out prizes to top 10, so managed to get a prettier medal than the rest. :)

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