Archive for the ‘News’ Category

What You Risk Reveals What You Value

Posted: December 7, 2011 in Events, News
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Man dies after completing half-marathon in StanChart race
By Wayne Chan | Posted: 04 December 2011 1717 hrs

SINGAPORE: A 21-year-old Singaporean died after completing the half-marathon of the Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore on Sunday morning.

The Organising Committee said in a statement on Sunday afternoon that he collapsed at the finish line at about 8.30am.

He was immediately attended to and sent to the Singapore General Hospital.

He died at about 9.30am.

The Organising Committee will assist the Police in its investigation.

Link

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Just a week after the Philadelphia Marathon where two runners died, here comes another sad news. I would have ran this race for my second 42K if not for injuries. It’s distressing that events which celebrate life have resulted in deaths. What happened here?

Was it the weather? I’m told that it was cloudy that morning, with the sun bearing down only later in the day so it couldn’t have been heatstroke, though humidity might have been a problem. Lack of fluids? I’m pretty certain the organizers offered plenty of water and sports drinks so it couldn’t have been dehydration, though one can’t count out electrolyte imbalance. Pushing too hard? Perhaps. The 21K runners started at 6:30am and if he crossed the finish line at 8:30am, then he might have been aiming for a sub-2. A lot of runners dream of crossing this time barrier. His determination was strong but his body could not take it.

This is no doubt a tragedy, not only for the young man himself but also for his family and friends, some of whom may have been waiting for him at the finish line. If it’s any consolation, he died while doing something he loves. I bet he never felt more alive than those last few hours of his life. He achieved what he wanted. He truly gave it his all.

On a few half marathons, I’ve felt like blacking out near the end. During my first full marathon, I’ve accepted the possibility that I might collapse and so I asked my family to be there at the finish line, just in case. I was committed to complete it whatever happened. It wasn’t simply a run. It was a symbolic personal victory. Every runner has his reasons.

That said, I run to reclaim my life and not to die. I have become more careful about my training plan and race day habits so as not to push myself too far. I have learned how to listen to my body. I still refuse to quit but I choose my battles wisely. Despite these measures, there will always be dangers on the road and on the trails, more so because I plan on taking up ultra marathons, skyathlons, mountain climbing and triathlons in the near future. All of them can be considered extreme sports where even veteran competitors have lost their lives. It doesn’t matter. Being out there beats being cooped up in my room afraid of possibilities. I could die once or I could die a little everyday in self-defeat. It’s an easy choice.

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MELINDA Ponce died with her running clothes on.

Hours before she was killed in a gruesome massacre, Melinda was where she was almost every Sunday — in a run.

At 5:30 a.m. yesterday, the Banco de Oro (BDO) employee fired the starting gun during the fun run that opened her bank’s sports fest. She was happy and enjoyed being with co-workers during the run, said BDO E-mall branch accountant and fellow ultra-runner Virgilio Remo Jr.

MELINDA PONCE started running only at 48. Five years and one mild stroke later, she would win successive ultra-marathons. (PHOTO BY JAMES GO)

Having been featured in newspapers after winning ultra-marathons, races that are at least 50 kilometers, Ponce, 53, was an office celebrity and many of her co-workers had their pictures taken with her. Ponce instructed those manning the water stations and cheered on the bank employees who joined the 3K and 5K events.

“She was very happy,” Remo said.

Big shock

Hours later, Remo and members of the local running community would learn that Melinda, three of her children and their helper would be shot dead by her husband, who then killed himself. Melinda and three of the children were all shot in the head. Her husband spared one child, the youngest, whom he asked to leave and call the police before he started killing everyone.

“The news of her tragic death was a big shock to me,” said Don Bosco brother and ultra-runner Carlo Bacalla, “She is really an inspiration to so many runners, an example of hard work, dedication and determination. We in the running community will miss her. It’s sad that she has gone so soon.”

Ponce started running only at 48, a year after undergoing total hysterectomy. She suffered a mild stroke in 2009, which she blamed on her failure to look after her health and pushing herself physically despite the lack of rest.

Ponce ran every morning from her house in Bulacao, Talisay City to the IT Park on her way to work. She was still considering joining the 100-kilometer race from Bogo City to Cebu City in November.

“Dili nato ni undangon, makaayo man ni sa atong lawas (Let’s not stop running because this is good for our health),” Ponce told runners gathered in Ayala Center Cebu last Sept. 30.

Ultra-marathon wins

Ponce won the women’s category in the last two ultra-marathons she joined – the Be Resorts Warrior 53K that started and ended in Mactan Island and the Summit 60K in Talisay City last Oct. 9.

Ponce had qualified for this year’s national finals of the Milo Marathon in her age category after running 21K in 1 hour and 52 minutes. She said running in the national finals was her dream. She also qualified last year but chose not to run so that she could join the first ultra-marathon in Cebu – a 50-kilometer run from Mt. Manunggal to the Capitol.

But while she was looked up to as an inspiration in the local running community, she was battered at home, friends and relatives told Sun.Star Cebu.

Emmanuel would repeatedly beat up Melinda and her children, a neighbor who asked not to be named told Sun.Star Cebu. At one time, Emmanuel held a knife at Melinda.

(This article by Max Limpag was taken from Cebu Running.)

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Dear fellow runners,

In honor of fellow ultra-marathoner Melinda Ponce, who passed away with her children, we would like to invite everyone to join forces with our brothers and sisters in Cebu in celebrating her and her children’s life with a solidarity run to be held in Bonifacio Global City right after Adidas KOTR & St. Peter’s Run.

Distance: 5K
Assembly Time: 0800AM Requiem Mass
Assembly Area: St Michael the Archangel Parish
Gun Start: 9:00AM

For more information, please go to the Facebook event page here: Run In Peace, Melinda Ponce (Manila)

Thank you and see you there!

Paula Radcliffe at the finish line of the 2003 London Marathon

You can change the rules, but you can’t change history.

In 2003, Paula Radcliffe ran the marathon in a world record time of 2:15:25. Now there is a rule which retroactively plans to strip her of her world record because she ran with men.

Un-frakkin’-believable.

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Negating existing records punishes heroic women
Peter Gambaccini, ESPN

What sport could possibly be more basic and uncomplicated than running? You line up at Point A and run to Point B. If you do that faster than anyone else ever has, you’re a record-holder, right?

Umm … not necessarily, it now seems.

You may have absorbed some of the controversy regarding a decision by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) regarding women’s marathon records. The IAAF is the governing body of track and field and road racing, and has now decided that only times run in “women’s only” races can be given consideration as world and national marathon records, and that times in “mixed” races, or those in which men were employed as women’s pacesetters, cannot be designated as records. The most controversial part of the decision is that the IAAF is rewriting history.

Thus, Paula Radcliffe’s previously accepted world record of 2:15:25 is out, as is another 2:17:18 she ran. The consolation is that Radcliffe is still the world record-holder, with a 2:17:42 she posted in London in 2005, when the women started 45 minutes before the men. Radcliffe told Runner’s World that the IAAF action “is a little unfair. If they were going to make that rule, it should have been so from the beginning when world records came in on the roads. Now it is messy.” She also made clear that in the two races now ineligible for record consideration, “it was not my decision to have male runners with me, but that of the race organizers.”

Deena Kastor’s listed American women’s marathon record of 2:19:36 is now out, as are fast times by Joan Benoit — who nevertheless will likely be listed as the U.S. record-holder, based on her 2:24:52 back in 1984 at the Los Angeles Olympics. Kastor suggested that the IAAF ruling “feels like a little bit of a cheapo shot” and asserts “nothing is going to take away the feeling I had of breaking the record that day.”

Well, the IAAF is going to try to take away that feeling. One has to wonder why any sense of urgency exists about rewriting the marathon record books. One has to wonder because the IAAF isn’t saying much about its motivation. It’s a decision that seems both idiotic and nasty. If it’s an attempt to provide “clarity,” it fails miserably.

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Man, she’s really strong. I’ve discovered LC Langit just recently thru a short feature on MultiSport Magazine. She’s quite an athlete, winning medals in international competitions everywhere, and now she has added another one to her collection. A closet upgrade must be in order. Tsk. Galing!

Keep it up, LC! Congratulations! ^_^

The Philippine delegation won gold and bronze medals at the 2011 Mekong River Multi-Sports Festival held recently at Chiangsean district, Chiangrai, Thailand.

Lea Coline Langit bagged the gold when she topped the Asian Aquathlon (1,500m swim, 5K run) event, while Robeno Javier took the bronze in the Asian duathlon (10k run, 40k bike, 5k run) stage. The gold-bronze medal haul surpassed the two bronze medals won by duathletes August Benedicto and Monica Torres in the sports festival’s 2010 edition.

It was also Langit’s second Asian Aquathlon title after bagging the said crown in 2009 in Palembang, Indonesia. The said event also saw her claiming the bronze medal in triathlon.

Despite the lack of sleep, Langit was still in her best form during the race day as she anchored her campaign on her strength in the swim to submit the Asian best time at 36 minutes and 19 seconds.

Langit came out of the water a second behind the world’s 25th ranked triathlete Rakda Vodickova of Czech Republic at 13 minutes and 59 seconds as she enjoyed an advantage of a minute and 13 seconds over challenger Hoi Long of Macau.

She relaxed in the run leg for a slow 22:20 time but the huge gap Langit had against Long was more than enough to cushion the late surge of her rival who took the silver with 36:21. Taipei’s Chang Luo-Yi bagged the bronze with 36:23 time.

Read the full article from the Philippine Daily Inquirer here.

MILO Marathon 2011 Schedule

Posted: February 20, 2011 in Events, News
Tags: ,

This is it, folks!

The MILO Marathon has always been one of the most anticipated local running events because of its history, the big cash prizes, and the challenge posed by having strict qualifying times. The 2011 schedule has just been released so mark your calendars, everyone!

This year marks its 35th edition, featuring 17 elimination races and one final race on December 11. It kicks off on July 3 in Laoag while the Manila Elimination Leg is on July 31. That should give people plenty of time to prepare. I’m sure every serious runner out there is eager to join and qualify for the Finals.

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