Sunday, 19 April 2015

Hard as Nayls - Hong Kong.

Race: Hard as Nayls
Website: Here
Results: Here
Distance: 21k (13 miles)
Elevation: 2156m gain.
Terrain: Path, Beach and Mountain.
Country: Hong Kong (a half version of this)

I was pretty unfit by this stage of our travels, i had spent much of the preceding six months eating my through South East Asia. Nonetheless, I was in Kong Kong and there was a mountain race to be done. The race was a memorial race in the memory of a police officer from Anglesey, North Wales who was serving as a police officer in Hong Kong until he died during an ironman triathlon in New York.

pulling up the climb.

The race ran around Clearwater Bay Country Park. I remember a particularly severe climb to the top of one of the hills that was rewarded by spectacular view across the glistening oceans below. It was a humid day making progress difficult. I had to avoid a competitor that had come to grief in the final 400m (he was receiving medical attention and recovered).  There were lots of Westerners dong the race and it seems there was a good running community locally. After the race we returned to one of the beaches that I had run across, only this time to dip in the sea.  I finished this race in 26th position in a time of 2 hours 12 minutes and 6 seconds. The video of me crossing the line is here at 1:47:40 


Sunday, 12 April 2015

RC Goldmine Half Marathon - Philippines.

Race: RC Goldline Half Marathon
Distance: 13.1 miles (21k)
Country: Philippines
Website: Here
Video: Here

Cebu is a major city on a  minor island in the south of the country. I had to get out of bed at 3am for a 4:30am start. The idea was to beat the heat, the majority of the race is done before sunrise. It felt strange assembling up on a race line in the dark and stranger when a clergyman took to the microphone to say pre race prayers across the cast of runners that had fallen silent in respect. Not long after prayers, we were released into the dark to hit the streets of Cebu. I wasn't fit for a half marathon and so I set off at a ginger pace to make sure I simply got round. It seemed a bit reckless to run into last of the night along unfamiliar streets an unfamiliar city, some of it was seemed fairly deprived.

I remember running past families crouched over cooking pots, cooking breakfast by the side of the road. I had a few Philippine bob in my pocket in case I got lost or came to grief. The plan was to hire a moped and river to get me back to the race start if I could describe where it was. In the end I finished in daylight as the heat was taking hold. An amazing experience, the Philippine folk love their running and make a real spectacle of their events as the video above illustrates.

Feeling the Heat 

The results where never published but I think I ran about 1 hour 50 but the major achievement though was not getting lost in Cebu City!