By NG WEI LOON, click here too
JAPANESE expatriate Iwata Takatoshi got off to a good start in ushering the New Year at the third edition of the Pacemakers Network Run at the Lake Gardens in Kuala Lumpur recently.
En route to completing six laps of the 2.29km loop each around the course, the established frontrunner in the local road races reduced the meet record by more than three minutes with a new mark of 53:07 to emerge as overall champion as well as winner in the men’s 40 to 49 category.
Previous record holder K. Murali-nathan from Klang Pacers Athletic Club (KPAC) clocked 56:50 at the social event last year.
Although Muralinathan went out strongly to register the fastest lap of 8:06 on the opening loop, Iwata took over as the race leader after the third lap.
From there, the eventual outcome was a forgone conclusion when Iwata pulled away with the led and continued to chalk up sub nine minutes in the first four rounds before easing it off for the final two laps.
However, Muralinathan’s effort was enough for him to secure the top position in the men’s 30 to 39 years category.
Pacemakers captain Ronnie See admitted Iwata’s record will stand for a long time because he has set a very high standard for other competitors to match in the future.
“Murali went out very strongly for a fast start in the first two laps and could not sustain the pace. But, Iwata had a more rational strategy and opted for consistency throughout the race,” added See, who set up the http://pm1.blogspot.com to cater to avid social runners in the Klang Valley.
Debutant Michele Tan Bee Kiang also flexed her domination in the women’s section and finished the four-lap race in 38:27 ahead of Lynn Guan Yoke Ling and Ameba Chan Chui Miew in second (43:50) and third (45:52) respectively.
The meet drew the biggest turnout thus far with almost 130 participants in five categories.
The four sections for men are below 29 years, 30 to 39 years, 40 to 49 years and above 50 years while the women featured in the open category.
“Initially, we planned to host the Network Run once every two years. But, our members requested us to organise the fun run to usher the New Year with a healthy pursuit.
“We are pleased the running community came out to support the event with 25 volunteers helping us to run the meet,” said See, adding that most of the recreational runners from the group also took part in the One Mile Dash: New Year Bash held in the city on New Year’s Eve.
Excel Chemical stepped forward to sponsor the event while KPAC also gave away 20 lucky draws comprising New Balance products.
Currently, Pacemakers have about 60 members working out regularly at the Lake Gardens in Kuala Lumpur on weekdays.
- Below 29 years: 1. Jasni Khairil 54:59, 2. Ng Swee Yee 56:15, 3. Mohd Syahidan 57:43
- 30 to 39 years: 1. K. Muralinathan 54:45, 2. Stanley Cheong 59:01, 3. Rozmi Yunus 59:33
- 40 to 49 years: 1. Iwata Takatoshi 53:07, 2. Daniel Tan 60:34, 3. Dhan Bahadur 61:04
- Above 50 years: 1. Tan Wah Sing 62:36, 2. Tan Chee Choon 63:32, 3. Tung Chee Yong 68:01
- Open: 1. Michele Tan Bee Kiang 38:27, 2. Lynn Guan Yoke Ling 43:50, 3. Ameba Chan Chui Miew 45:52