Friday, 29 June 2012

- It's back !!! Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012 -

Media Release
Registration for Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012 Opens 6 July

Singapore, 28 June 2012 – Singapore’s marquee running event, the Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (SCMS) 2012 returns for another year with registration officially starting on Friday, 6 July 2012, at Raffles Place Park at 11am.
Acting Minister for Community Development Youth and Sports, Mr Chan Chun Sing, will grace the event as the guest-of-honour. He will be joined by Mr Richard Seow, Chairman, Singapore Sports Council (SSC); Mr Lim Teck Yin, Chief Executive Officer, SSC and Mr Ray Ferguson, Chief Executive Officer, Singapore, Standard Chartered Bank.
The first 1,000 SCMS 2012 registrants at the Raffles Green will receive a limited edition goodie bag as well as special race privileges. They will be entitled to priority sign ups and a 50% discount for running clinics, free transportation from designated pick up points across Singapore on race day, and there will also be a dedicated counter for them at the Race Entry Pack Collection (REPC).
Furthermore, registrants from the queue at Raffles Place Park will also stand a chance to win attractive prizes (see below) such as SEIKO Men’s watches worth SGD$645 each, and Pure Fitness memberships (worth S$1,600 for six months and S$2,500 for 12 months), courtesy of the event’s sponsors.
Runners will also be able to register for their running slots online via the official website ( from 11am at 6 July 2012, as well as at Toa Payoh Sports & Recreation Centre (SRC) from 11am, 7 July 2012 onwards.

Name: Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012 – Registration launch
Date: 6 July 2012, Friday
Time: 11am – 4pm
Venue: Raffles Place Park, above Raffles Place MRT Station

- Freedom Freaks rocked Kuala Lumpur -

Here's a video to celebrate our achievements at recent SCKLM. Everyone is a champion in their own way.
Congrats to all who completed the run regardless of the distances ......

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

- Tri-Factor Run 2012: Inaugural Inter-Club Challenge -

We are pleased to inform that 2 of our runners are invited to join the Inaugural Inter-Club Challenge organized by the Tri-Factor team.
The event will happen on 8th July 2012 at F1 Pit Building.
The flag-off timing will be at 0545 hours for the 21km Inter-Club Challenge Run.
There are other events happening on that day too.
For more information of the whole event, click here.

Statement from the organizer:
' In addition to the above-mentioned category, a new part of the Tri-Factor Series is the Inter-Club Challenge. This special close category segment is only for invited athletes from various clubs to compete with each other. For Tri-Factor Run, there will be a 21 km category and we will like to invite your club to be part of this challenge 2012. This category is strictly for invited athletes and we are extending it to all the running clubs in Singapore.'  
The 2 representatives for Freedom Freaks are none other than our 2 Speed Demons ; Izat and Yao Ming.

- Yao Ming -

- Chong Izat -

So let us all wish them all the best and hope that they can bring glory to Freedom Freaks.
Win or lose does not matter, as long as they do their best and having fun competing against fast runners in Singapore.

Once again, GOOD LUCK to them both !!

If any of you are free on that day, do come down to support them or the other Freaks who are also participating in other events.
Put on our Freedom Freaks tee ok !!

- SCKLM 2012: We did rocked Kuala Lumpur ..... !! -

SCKLM 2012.
It was a good experience for some of the Freaks that went up to Kuala Lumpur and ran at the event.
Tough seems to be an understatement but we are glad that we did it !!

- The sending-off -
Thanks to Yao Ming, Ronald and Sophian for sending us off at the airport last Saturday.
There's a good team spirit we had there.
Really hoped that many other Freaks could join us in the event but too bad, most are caught up with other plans.
But having said that, as it was our 1st time going for an overseas run, the turn out this time wasn't that bad.

- After our lunch-loading session -
Meet up with few other Freaks at KLCC for lunch. A simple affair but we spent quite some time doing some catching up and asking our Malaysian counterparts about what to expect for the run the next day.

- At the Start/Finish line after race pack collection -
Thank God the racepack collection and the Start/Finish line is near to our hotel. Less than 5 minutes walk. Nothing much to shop other than meet up with friends and also made new friends.
Had our dinner and then rested at our rooms to prepare for the big day !!

- The Freaks before the run. Pic credit to Boon Yeong -
Reached the start line at about 3am to do some cam-whoring and meet up with some other friends.
Some of the Malaysian runners knew Freedom Freaks and it was quite a good thing.
Wished each others 'Best of luck' and waited patiently before the VIP flagged off the run at exactly 0430 hours ......

Hope we can organize another overseas events for Freedom Freaks.
And SCKLM 2013 will be in our agenda.
It was a tough run due to the slopes and the traffics, but then again it was a pleasant experience to be running in this race.

More race reviews to be updated soon within this week.
Thanks all for the supports shown and given to us.
Appreciate that.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

- We've got a banner !!! -

- The sponsor -
All thanks to Ronald Heng, we've got ourselves a banner for FREEDOM FREAKS !!
The banner will make it's debut public appearance during next weekend Standard Chartered KL Marathon ........

- The unveiling of our banner -
Let's hope that Freedom Freaks will be known in the region .....
For now, train hard for the run next week !!

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

- Punggol Waterway PAssion Active Run 10km: A race review by Ariffin 'BoyWonder' Iskandar -

The Punggol Active PAssion Run, or Punggol Waterway as it is more commonly known, was held successfully yesterday morning. With an affordable registration fee of $25 for the 10km competitive run and $20 for the 5km run, runners turned up in big numbers to pound the pavement while enjoying the breeze of Punggol Waterway.

There was a late change to the route for the 10km run, with the organizers heeding advice from the Land Transport Authority and Traffic Police. Some members of the forum on welcomed this new change as they found the new map easier to understand in comparison to the older one.
Personally it didn't matter much to me as I have not ran at Punggol before, so I was looking forward to running in a new location.

For this run, there were about 8 Freaks attending it, a small but strong force of demons!

- With the early Freaks -
The run flagged off at 7.30am sharp, near the start line, I saw many familiar faces like Ganesh from Sundown and Vasant from IMD, just to name a few. Halim advised me to start off slightly faster than targeted pace as the running route would get quite narrow after the first 1km or so. And so we both started off at a fast pace, then once we were in Punggol Waterway, we settled in at our target pace. My goal was to get a Sub 50, my first Sub 50, and I wanted to do this run for the late Nur.

The first 3km or so, I was maintaining a steady 5.00 pace, only off by a few seconds. Around the 3km mark, I got a shock. They were giving out bottled un-chilled NeWater at the Hydration Points. I didn't take it as I knew it would be time consuming to actually open up the bottles and stop running to drink from it. Halim running fast and soon he was out of my sight, I was sure he could get a Sub 50 if he maintained that pace.

- Maintaining our pace -
At the U Turn Point, Hamrit overtook me. Although he was still nursing his injuries, he was "flying". He picked up his pace at about the 4.8km mark for a strong finish. He even overtook Halim with 2km to go! Way to go bro Hamrit!

As for myself it was a mental struggle, as each distance marker passed by, my pace was decreasing. I didn't stop running for the first 8km, but I could feel some muscle fatigue in my legs, I didn't bring my legs up towards my butt to get a proper stride, was landing heavily too. Have to work on that, it always happens when I feel tired. But of course, all I needed was a look at my right wrist.... seeing the three letter word there kept me going.

The last hydration served HTWO. HTWO in bottles which were not chilled. What was the point of serving HTWO at almost the end of the race? You won't be able to replenish the sodium and carbohydrates in time, at there was less than 2km to go. I ended up only drinking 1/3 of the bottle. I remember I threw away the bottle just in time when I saw the lens of this photographer, Mr. Low Khia Khing.

At the 8km mark, checking against my watch, I lost hopes of doing a Sub 50. I passed the 8km marker at around 42 minutes, I just picked up the pace for a strong finish. When we exited from Punggol Waterway, a short but winding uphill stretch awaited us. After emerging, I saw the finish line up ahead. It seemed too near. I checked against my watch and it showed 49 minutes, I thought to myself that there was still a chance, so I sprinted towards the end, clocking an unofficial time of about 49:46. I looked up to the sky and smiled.

- Ran for the late baby Nur -
Halim's Garmin showed that the distance was about 9.8km, not a full 10km, didn't exactly feel like one either but it's alright. I know where I must work on to improve for the next run! Hamrit and Halim both got Sub 50 timings. All the freaks who attended the event broke their Personal Best timings. My Dad also got a personal best of 1:09:36! Kudos to all!

We just PB-ed!

The event in general was decent, they handled the narrow running route and late change of route well. They could have improved on the hydration points, which I hope they will change next year. Well done Punggol Runners for organizing the first ever Punggol Waterway Run!

- With the rest of the Freaks after the run -

By the time you're reading this, I am already in Kuala Lumpur for a retreat with my mates, will try to hit the gym and at least go for a short run when I'm there.

My next run will be the Half Marathon at Standard Chartered KL Marathon on 24th June.

Kick ASSphalt!

Monday, 11 June 2012

- Sundown Marathon: A Half-Marathon run for a 1st timer. Words from Adeline Lai -

"Heavy rain fails to dampen night race. Record 28,000.00 turnout for 5th edition of the Sundown Marathon". - The Straits Time 28 May 2012

"Light up the city" 26 May 2012, 12.30am(27 May 2012). Sundown Marathon 2012.

It was the most sought after marathon for the runners. My very first Sundown and half marathon...

As I have little or no experience for running half, a few months before the race, I did some research and seek advice for the run; on the kind of running shoes to wear, the technique on the running and training etc etc. I was that serious.

I ran almost every other day, it was really tough. I almost wanted to give up but I know I need to be mentally positive about it.

The day finally came, I knew I have to rest and eat well before the race but I was felling extremely nervous so I didn't really get to do what I was suppose to.

- 1st time meeting with the KING -

I reached the venue 2 hours before race time, it was massively crowded. As usual, met up with the FF peeps for camwhoring, I was happy to have met some peeps whom i have never met before, especially The King Sam and made many new friends too. It was an exciting moment taking photos, I felt we were so special because our Tees stands out. I could sense that many other runners were looking at us, wondering what kind of group is this and some unknown photographer took shots of us. It feels really great!

- With the ladies .... -
The announcement for us to proceed to the starting line came about, I could feel butterflies in my stomach. Was relieved knowing that Ying Shan, Eillen and Chee Wah were also running half and we could start the race together. I realized that there were many big lighted up "balloons" indicating the timing we expected to complete to join the queue, so it will not go chaotic I guess. I am impressed that it was so well organized.

The race started at 12.30am sharp, we followed the flow and moved to the starting line.

A steady 7.30min pace throughout the 10km as I ran along Nicoll Highway towards Marina Bay Sands. Approximately every 5km there were water point and to me, it was a must stop to hydrate myself though it was just a sip of water or a sip of 100 plus.

When I reached the 11 clicks mark, I started to realize that I have to take my first caffeinated energy gel to give me another boost to go on. I didn't really remember I was suffering from any pain till I reached approx 14km mark from Marina Barrage to Gardens by the Bay East. I felt both of my hips were a little sore and I knew I have to go slow this time. Looking at my Garmin watch, my pace has increased to 10min and I was getting a little worry by then. I took another energy gel to continue.

I was telling myself that if i speed up now, i will definitely make it to 2:30hrs (dreaming only) so I try my best to excel with a drop of speed to 7:30min again. I ran like a speedy gonzales for at least 2km. I felt exhausted at the 16km mark.

I told myself that I must not give up since I have gone this far. I need to enjoy the run and complete it. I went on at a pace of 8min because my hips was giving me a slight pain.
A gust of strong wind blew across my face and followed by a drizzle. I could see lightning from far. At this moment, I knew, no matter what i have to speed up. The rain was getting heavier when I crossed Kallang heading back to Nicoll Highway.

I was completely drenched, an sms just prompted from the organiser to ask to take shelter. Goodness ! I was already totally wet, forget about taking shelter and so I ran on. The wind was strong and the rain was heavy, heavy shoes and vision blurred. Pushed myself really hard on the last 1.5km. Crowds were cheering on, and finally I did it.

My finishing pose. Glad to complete it !! -
Board timing indicated 2:51:48. That glorious moment indeed.
By : Adeline Lai
       Chip Time : 2:53:43(not sure why not same as what i saw on the board :( )

Sunday, 10 June 2012

- The newlyweds: Johan Aidil & Siti Farhanah -

A big congratulation to the newlyweds from Freedom Freaks, Johan Aidil & Siti Farhanah.

- The loving couple -
From all of us at Freedom Freaks, we give you both a heart filled wishes on your wedding; hoping the best for you two today and forever; happy married life .....
Enjoy your 1st nite together !! 

Monday, 4 June 2012

- Sundown Marathon 2012 Race review by Meng Chan -

Sundown 2012 – my 2nd full marathon, and oh boy it was an expensive one. 

I paced myself at 7-8mins right from the starting point. It was a humid night. Everything took a turn after hitting East Coast Park. The weather was bad, thunder, lightning, strong wind and the heavy downpour. It killed my GPS watch and my MP3. Couldn’t record my distance and time, and thus was unable to pace myself. Couldn’t really see properly due to the hard rain hitting my spectacles. Gotta slow down tremendously. Was starving at the 11km mark. McMuffin was enticing, and that was it! Grabbed a bite, continued the race, had coffee along the way too!

- Taking shelter with friends along the way -
Made some new friends, and managed to catch up with Sunny. Ran together through to the finishing line.

- With Sunny, my unofficial pacer -
This was my first cold-shivering run. Fortunately enough, my legs didn’t hurt that much unlike my last marathon.

- Glad to complete it at last !! -
A first 42km completion in VFF, a hole in there. Official timing was 6hrs 40sec. it was better than my last marathon by 18 mins. I have to minus the 10-15mins McMuffin-moments though.

- At the finish line !!! -

Cheers to all supporters and participants!

- With some of the FREAKS after the run -

Sunday, 3 June 2012

- Sundown Marathon 2012 Race Review by Ronald Heng -

It was a Marathon race day plus a one-night hotel stay with my mum, Eileen (Fiancee), Jeff (Brother) and Yingshan (Jeff's girfriend) at Swissotel The Stamford on Saturday (26 May 2012). Never done this before but we reckon it was a good arrangement, heading straight to the hotel for a good shower and rest right after the race.

- Thumbs-up !! -

We reached Nicoll Highway open field and met up all our Freedom Freaks runners 2 hours just before the race started. Here we are!

- We are the FREAKS !!! -

The race was about to start and I was together with The King Sam-E, Asree, Izhar, Izat and Jeff at the first pen of starting line and waiting for our Sundown 42km race to flag-off. Immediately after the race was flagged off, everybody started to "CHIONG" all the way in their races. I don't understand why these crazy people did that, and yeah, I was one of them too. Hah!

While running my 1st km, someone called my name from behind. I turned around and I saw Robson Phan, one of our local elite marathoners and Ironman.
Robson was my 42km pacer at last season's SCMS 2011 but unfortunately I was not good enough to keep up his demon pace and lost him at 18 km marker @ ECP. 
This time round at Sundown 2012, Robson was also my pacer but I eventually lost to his fast pace at 19 km marker @ ECP. 

- With Robson Phan -
Heavy downpour at my 27 km marker at ECP and I encountered many loud thunder sounds and flashy lightening.  As the weather got colder, the strong winds and the pain in my foot sole due to wet shoes, I began to slow down my pace from 5:30 mins/km to 7:00 mins/km. All I wanted was to finish the race safely, with no injuries. At about 30 km marker, Asree appeared beside me, happy to see him. He encouraged me not to give up as we were about to finish the race soon. We then paced each other and saw The King Sam-E zoomed past us, followed by Yao Ming and Jasmine Goh as well in between about 35 km to 38 km.

At my 40 km marker, my GPS watch recorded 3:40 hours. I told Asree that I wanted to give a hard try effort to beat my PB of 3:51 hours, with given 10 minutes to complete my last 2.195 km. Without hesitating, Asree supported my decision and told me to go for my goal. I left him at 40 km and increased my running pace from 7:00 mins/km to 5:30 mins/km. Finally, I crossed the 42km finishing line in 3:52:34 hours (net time) but was unable to break my PB and exceeded my time taken by 1 minute 7 seconds. What a wasted chance! 

- Yeeeaahhhhhhhhh -

Despite my PB failure, this Sundown Marathon 2012 was a special one as I think I have done two good things.

1) I fought hard through a heavy rain in my 42km race and managed to complete a sub-4 hour marathon successfully. After the race, I gave my hard-earned 42km finisher tee and medal to my Fiancée who has been supporting me since day 1. She boosts my confidence level, and I truly believe she deserves the tee and the medal for always being there for me.

2) I dedicated my marathon effort to my company's Adecco Win4Youth campaign for raising charity fund to help and integrate young & needy people into work, in difficult environments.

My #1 supporter -
- Still happy despite the failure to get a PB -

 Next up for me is the Gold Coast Marathon which is on the 1st of July 2012. Hope to get a very good timing in the cold cold weather .....
Will review on the run soon. Thanks all for the time.

Pics credit to Sasha Farina, Asree, Lim TC, and myself.