THE Pacemakers running group commemorated their fourth anniversary in a competitive way at the Taman Metropolitan Park in Kepong last week.
They gathered to compete in the annual Pacemakers Anniversary Relay (PAR) race around the 3.3km circuit at the recreational park.
Race director Ronnie See said the seasoned runners from established teams and clubs were eager to take part in the event and they fielded their best line-up to be among the front-runners in the race.
“It is the first time we are organising the relay here. For a start, the course is longer this year.
“It is also a more challenging trail because the undulating course comprised a series of climbs. We hosted our first two runs at the KLCC Park.
“Last year, the event was held at the Lake Gardens. The course distance at the KLCC Park is only 1.3km while the route around the Lake Gardens is 2.3km for each lap,” he added.
A total of 27 teams including members from the Pacesetters Athletic Club Malaysia (PACM), Klang Pacers Athletic Club (KPAC) and the beginners from the runnersmalaysia's support running group featured in the relay.
Teams were required to field one woman and three men to form a quartet.
The KPAC quartet of S. Thanagathy, J. Vigneswaran, Ng Swee Yee and R. Jayakumar made a memorable debut and clocked 49:42 to emerge champions.
“It was a good outing for us and a nice change to run at a new venue. The organisers have done a good job to host the event,” said Jayakumar.
KPAC president S.P. Wong said they knew that they had a bright chance to claim the victory as they had a strong side with young runners to vie for the top position.
“In fact, we wanted to enter our veteran team to join the fun. But, the organisers only offered us a slot because of limited places,” he added.
En route to victory, KPAC brushed aside the early challenge from Klang Runners before they dethroned the defending champions.
Although Klang Runners comprising Michele Tan, K. Muralinathan, R. Gunaselan and P. Naresh Kumar stayed ahead at the halfway mark, KPAC surged forward to take over the lead in the last one kilometre before the final baton changeover.
“We were trailing about a minute going into the final stage of the race.
“But, we knew that there was no chance for us to fight back. They (KPAC) had a strong last runner (Jayakumar) and he just went out to stretch their lead.
“But, we had a great time because it was a friendship run,” said Klang Runners anchorman Naresh.
Klang Runners registered 52:03 to finish second followed by Fantastic Five of Jessica Tang, Jasni Khairil, Ronnie See and Lai Fong Sang in third (54:33).
At the end of the race, the organisers also provided breakfast for the participants.
The winners received their medals and six lucky winners also went home with lucky draw prizes.
Pacemakers were formed in 2004 with the set-up of http://pm1.blogspot.com to allow the avid recreational runners to communicate and share ideas about running through the website.
Currently, they have more than 50 active members and train at the Lake Gardens in Kuala Lumpur.
“When we started, we used to workout at the KLCC Park because it was a convenient spot for those working in Kuala Lumpur's central business district to get together for training after working hours.
“Last year, we moved to the Lake Gardens because parking at KLCC Park became more expensive,” said See, who is also the group's team captain.
source from Star Metro