I completed my first half marathon in two years, one week after running the 18.45 km race. Actually, I signed up only one hour before extended registration closed, yet not expecting a good run because I have not trained adequately for it. Indeed I ran out of stamina starting from 16 km, legs had no strength, my pace became super slow, and I needed to walk up slopes in the final kilometers.
Nevertheless, my main objective is achieved: completing a half marathon after coming out of a kneecap problem. It felt great throughout the race. And the timing itself is actually not too shabby, within my expectations, although quite far off my personal best.
I was in the second wave, which flagged off exactly at midnight. In the first third of my run, I positioned myself ahead of the 02:15 pacers and maintained this position for the remainder of the race.
The route is quite challenging with quite a few slopes. First, the Benjamin Sheares Bridge which is the big one. Then the bypass of the MRT construction site at Gardens by the Bay (Bay East), immediately followed by the loop over the ceiling of the Marina Barrage. Lastly, the bridge adjacent to the Helix Bridge. In fact, the 1 km mark is visually right ahead of the start point, just 18 meters vertically up.
Sundown Marathon is very efficient in releasing race results this year. I actually have a better timing compared to the same race two years ago
Gun time: 02:08:04
Net time: 02:02:49
Split 1: 00:44:49
Split 2: 01:28:39
Split 3: 01:36:29
Split 4: 01:54:25
Overall position (gun time): 376/6287
Gender position (gun time): 316/3902
Comments about the organization of this race:
1. Route design wise, this edition of Sundown Marathon is much better compared to the same race two years ago
. There is no part of the route where runner traffic intersected with vehicular traffic. Most of the route is also sufficiently wide.
2. Water points are spaced on an average of 3 km apart, which I find insufficient. In particular, the first water point was more than 3 km away, which made me very thirsty.
3. Having to run three times the length of Gardens by the Bay (Bay East) is exceptionally boring. The route inside the car park is also comparatively narrow.
4. The half marathon and full marathon shared the same route for the first 7.5 km in the half marathon, except that the full marathon had an extension under the Crawford Underpass before going up the Benjamin Sheares Bridge. As a result, the alternating distance markers for the half marathoners and full marathoners can be quite confusing.
5. The presence of a large number of cheerleaders is a nice touch for this race.
6. Shuttle bus timings are just as poor this year compared to the same race two years ago
. Shuttle buses depart the race venue at 00:30, 02:30, and 04:30. This year I decided to spend some time soaking up the post race atmosphere, before leaving at 03:00 and going home by taxi.