HISTORIC 2019 IRONMAN MALAYSIA SEES BIGGEST EVER PARTICIPATION IN LANGKAWI

HISTORIC 2019 IRONMAN MALAYSIA SEES BIGGEST EVER PARTICIPATION IN LANGKAWI

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Editor’s Note

As the curtain falls on another spectacular edition of Ironman Malaysia 2019 on the idyllic Langkawi Island, courtesy of Ironman Malaysia, we look back at some of the many race highlights for the participating professional, as well as the brave amateur Triathletes. 

Every year, Ironman Malaysia is getting progressively better, and this prestigious international triathlon is making Langkawi even more famous than it already is. However, don’t be surprised if in the near future that Ironman will also be inversely known by their association with Langkawi too! After all, nothing attracts top Triathletes moee than the perfect combination of a tough course set amidst a paradise island backdrop… 

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  •       Multi Triathlon World Champion Javier Gomez (ESP) sets a new course record
  •       Age Grouper Maki Nishioka was the fastest female athlete at the event 

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  •       Celebrities Alif Satar and Khairy Jamaluddin add glamour to spectacle
  •       15 Malaysians get qualifying slot for 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship

KUALA LUMPUR (6 November 2019):  The 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia shattered records of all sorts in Langkawi, and will long be remembered as one of the most memorable events to take place since its inauguration in 2000.

Spain’s Javier Gomez cemented his status as arguably the best triathlete of all time after shattering the course record to finish in a stunning 8:18:58, taking over the previous record set by Frenchman Romain Guillaume (8:32:54) in 2017.

Philipp Koutny (Switzerland) came in second at 8:24:18, followed by Thiago Vinhal (Brazil) at 8:31:15.

After his win, Gomez said winning in Malaysia sets him up nicely to prepare for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020. “I raced well in the heat which is important to me. The conditions here is a good learning experience. Now it’s time to take a break and rest for the offseason. I will prepare for Tokyo after that,” he said.

In her first year as a professional athlete, Tessa Kortekaas from the Netherlands clinched the title for the 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia Professional Female category with the timing of 9:43:19. “It’s not easy, not many professionals will reach this goal in the first year. I cannot believe it, I have no words,” said the former age-grouper world champion.

Naomi Washizy (Japan) crossed the finish line second at 9:52.00, followed closely behind by Simona Krovankova (Czech Republic) at 9:59:27.

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Gutsy Maki Nishioka is the fastest female athlete on the course

Gomez was not the only record breaker in Langkawi, as Japan’s Maki Nishioka became the fastest female on the course after completing the race in 9:37:46.

Nishioka’s time surpassed Female Pro Tessa Kortekaas’ winning time of 9:43:20 in the women’s elite category, and the diminutive age-grouper is now ready to turn professional, after she outdid the pros.

“It was tough, but I just kept pushing through, and I have to thank my friends for their continuous support. After this I want to focus on training to become a professional IRONMAN,” said Nishioka.

Biggest ever IRONMAN Malaysia

The 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia saw the biggest ever participation in the history of the event in Malaysia, with over 2,500 participants registering.

Malaysia recorded the highest number of participants with over 910 triathletes which made up 35.5% of the total entries. Japanese participants were second (11%), followed by Singapore (6.5%) and Indonesia (5.1%).

The 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia and IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi would not have been possible without the help of 1,500 volunteers, who worked tirelessly throughout the course.

There was a total of 135 slots for the 2020 IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona in Hawaii and the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Taupo, New Zealand, which is the highest number of slots offered in a single venue.

2019 IRONMAN Malaysia offered 50 qualifying slots to top athletes across the age-groupers category which were announced in a roll down ceremony the morning after the race.

Whereas the 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi event offered 60 qualifying slots, plus an additional 25 slots specially for top finishing female athletes to the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, as part of Women for Tri, a programme under the IRONMAN Foundation to welcome and empower new female triathletes to be a part of the sport’s continued growth in high-level competition.

A total of 15 Malaysians claimed their spot at the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship and will be making their way to Taupo, New Zealand next November. This is a testament to the extraordinary progress made by the local athletes in the sport.

Women for Tri & IRONKIDs hyped up pre-race atmosphere

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There was camaraderie and emotions running high at the Women for Tri panel discussion as five strong women shared their personal journey leading up to 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia and IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi.

Katie Kyme, Amelia Shelton, Nur Zarina, Christine Loh and Cheryl Tay all had endured various challenges – including diagnosed with brain cancer and self-inflicted injury – but overcame them successfully to become women of lionhearts.

They awed the audience with their tales, and their bond only seemed to intensify the atmosphere leading up to race day.

IRONKIDS also proved a successful event, with the participation of 245 kids across two age groups (4-10 & 11-17) in the Aquathlon and Community Run.  The Aquathlon event, which featured the first open water swim event had 4-10 years old participating in the 50m swim followed by 1.8km run, and the 11-17 years old participating in the 100m swim and finishing with a 3.6km run. The Community Run were 1.8km and 3.6km distances for the 4-10 years old and 11-17 years old respectively.

Shahrom & Nursya finish as Best Malaysians

Shahrom Abdullah was Malaysia’s best Finisher with a time of 10:56:06, and the businessman was pleased with his time. “It’s good for my profile for sure, being a bicycle business owner. My aim next will be to compete at more IRONMAN events,” said Shahrom.

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Nursya was crowned the best Malaysian female athlete after she finished in 14:02:45.

“I want to continue to chase my target, and at the same time inspire more women to get involved in this extreme sport. The day you plant the seed is not the day you eat the fruit. Work hard, be kind and amazing things will happen,” said Nursya.

The Best Langkawian went to Muhd Hafiz Md Yusup, who finished with a time of 11:37:13.

Alif Satar & Khairy Jamaludin proud finishers

There was celebrity presence in Langkawi too, and popular host and singer Alif Satar was one of them. The 29-year-old, who was competing in his first IRONMAN race finished in 15:06:50 with a huge grin on his face.

Former Sports Minister Khairy also did well to finish the 70.3 in 7:00:24, and he was crowned with the Finisher’s medal by his mom.

*Disclaimer*
To the best of my knowledge, all of the information provided herein is accurate at the time of publishing and the views expressed are based on my own personal opinions and findings, and they don’t necessarily reflect the views of the Product Manufacturer, Event Organiser or any Third Party unless explicitly specified otherwise.

About The Author

Gus Ghani is the Founder of Running Toons and Virtual Sports ; a HIIT Fitness Coach, and Magazine Columnist.  He has contributed numerous insightful articles to The Star newspaper, Running Malaysia Magazine, and Cycling Malaysia Magazine. LIKE Happy Runner for RUNNING UPDATES, Gus Rider for CYCLING NEWS, Gus Ghani for SPORTS INFOTAINMENT and FOLLOW gusghani @IG for LIFESTYLE. 

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Posted in 2019, Endurance Sports, Fitness, International, Ironman, Ironman 70.3, Kedah, Langkawi, Media, press release, Race Review, Sports, Triathlete, Triathlon | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2019 Ironman Malaysia Langkawi Results

MULTIPLE-TIME TRIATHLON WORLD CHAMPION JAVIER GOMEZ SHATTERS COURSE RECORD TO CLINCH 2019 IRONMAN MALAYSIA TITLE

Tessa Kortekaas also creates history after winning women’s elite title in her first year as a professional

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LANGKAWI (26 OCTOBER 2019): Javier Gomez cemented his status as the greatest triathlete in history after shattering the course record to clinch the 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia title in emphatic fashion.

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The Spaniard with nine world titles crossed the finish line in a stunning 8:18:58, to eclipse the course record set by 2017 champion Romain Guillaume (8:32:54) in 2017.

Switzerland’s Philipp Koutny finished behind him in 8:24:18, while Brazil’s Thiago Vinhal took third place with an 8:31:15 finish.

A history-making day also witnessed Netherland’s Tessa Kortekaas winning the women’s elite category in 9:43:20 in her first year as a professional.

The 36-year-old Gomez was delighted to secure his first IRONMAN title under scorching conditions.

“It’s great, it’s my first IRONMAN win! It was a tough race, it was sunny all the time and the temperatures were high,” said Gomez.

“I had to give my best because Philipp (Koutny) did an amazing job on the bike. I had to catch him, and take some risks at the beginning of the run, but luckily I could keep up and take the win.”

Gomez was the marquee name in the 26-man professional field, and he lived up to his reputation with a powerful swim in the waters of Pantai Kok, to emerge the first man out in 47:17s.

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Gomez put a 1 min 51 seconds gap between him and defending champion Daniil Sapunov after the completion of swim to bike, with Guillaume closing in.

But Koutny emerged a contender at the 30km mark along with Guillaume to trail Gomez by two minutes, as the race intensified into the rolling hills among the villages around Datai.

The 75km mark signalled the first turning point of the race when Koutny overtook Gomez for the lead.

The Swiss was already showing glimpses of his talent with a big bike performance in Hawaii two weeks ago, seeing him through a Top-10 Finish at the IRONMAN World Championship.

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But Gomez upped the ante in the 42-km run, shaving off Koutny’s 5:30 advantage to just 25 seconds after 26 kilometres, and regained his lead through 33km to finish in sensational fashion.

“I set my pace, and I kept my nutrition by eating and drinking. It was difficult because I was struggling in the last six or seven km, but I’m happy to have crossed the finish line.”

The 2012 Olympics silver medallist plans to use this win to prepare for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.

“I raced well in the heat which is important to me. Now is time to take a break for the offseason. I will prepare for Tokyo after that.”

Gomez also earned an automatic slot to the 2020 IRONMAN World Championships in Kona, Hawaii next year.

Kortekaas, meanwhile, was coming to terms to digest a monumental victory in her first year as a professional female athlete.

“It’s not easy, not many professionals will reach this goal in the first year. I cannot believe it, I have no words,” said the former age-grouper world champion.

“I trained super hard for this. I had a great swim, bike was good, but the last 50 km was so hard and I was suffering. It’s going to take a long time before I believe this has happened.”

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The 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia started off with an open water swim start from the picturesque white sandy beach of Pantai Kok with a two-loop triangle out and back course. The athletes followed with a two-loop bike course heads out of Pantai Kok on to a clockwise loop from towards the rolling hills of Datai and the fringes of Kuah Town.

Returning from the bike route, athletes made their changeover on to the run course through a unique indoor air-conditioned transition at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Center (next to the airport). The 2.5 lap run course fulfilled the promise of an amazing scenic run beside the Langkawi International Airport towards the finish line at the stunning Cenang beach.

2019 IRONMAN Malaysia Pro Athlete Race Results

PRO MEN PRO WOMEN
1 Javier Gomez Spain 8:18:58 1 Tessa Kortekaas Netherlands 9:43:19
2 Philipp Koutny Switzerland 8:24:18 2 Naomi Washizu Japan 9:52:00
3 Thiago Vinhal Brazil 8:31:15 3 Simona Krivankova Czech Republic 9:59:27

Posted in 2019, Fitness, Ironman, Ironman 70.3, Kedah, Langkawi, October, press release, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ironman Langkawi 2019 – Final Countdown

T- 1 DAY TO RACE DAY: IRONKIDS LANGKAWI AQUATHLON TOOK ON THE OPEN WATER FOR THE FIRST TIME

Javier Gomez, Romain Guillaume & Daniil Sapunov are the right frame of mind as IRONMAN Malaysia looms one day away

LANGKAWI, 25 OCTOBER 2019:  With just one day left to IRONMAN Malaysia 2019, excitement is at an all-time high with triathletes getting in the right frame of mind for a gruelling race day on Saturday, which begins at dawn at the white sandy beach of Pantai Kok.

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The focus was arguably on IRONMAN podium frontrunners Romain Guillaume and Daniil Sapunov, as well as Javier Gomez, but the IRONKIDS provided a nice teaser on the eve of the world’s most iconic single-day endurance event.

‘Ohana reverberates at IRONKIDS

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The morning started with 245 kids, aged 4 to 17 who revelled at the opportunity to participate in IRONKIDS, which included an Aquathlon and Community Run.

The IRONKIDS Langkawi held at the Meritus Pelangi Beach Resort & Spa, offered four categories.

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IRONKIDS aged 4 to 10 participated in either a 50m swim and 1.8km run Aquathlon, or a 1.8km Community Run. IRONKIDS aged 11 to 17 could then participate in either a 100m swim and 3.6km Aquathlon, or a 3.6km Community Run, both of which were double the distance to that of the younger IRONKIDS categories.

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The success of this event continues the legacy of IRONKIDS, which has attracted over 40,000 children since its inception in 1985.

These future IRONMAN triathletes race in a friendly yet competitive environment while inspiring them to embrace the tagline “Every Finisher is a Winner.”

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IRONMAN Malaysia a crowd puller for world renowned triathletes

IRONMAN Malaysia 2019 has drawn one of its biggest participation yet, with more than 2,500 participants from 70 countries set to compete at the swim start.

This year, the congregation of the race is made up of 35% Malaysians. This puts Malaysia as the largest athlete congregation, growing rapidly as compared to the 12% Malaysian participation rate in 2014, with just over 1,400 athletes.

The second largest congregation comes from Japan, with over 280 (11%) athletes, followed by Singapore with 193 athletes (6.5%), and 129 (5.1%) athletes from Indonesia.

Pantai Kok will see 446 first timers toeing the swim start for IRONMAN Malaysia 2019, and 410 firsttimers for the 70.3 event.

The youngest participating athletes include 18-year-old Luth Mikhail (Male) and 19-year-old Nuraina Naziha (Female), both Malaysians. The oldest athletes are 78-year-old Shoji Nakano and 67-year-old Vicky Carpenter, who hail from Japan and United Kingdom respectively.

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Daniil Sapunov aiming for podium in ‘favourite place’

The Ukrainian defending champion has been in competitive form, having trained in Cyprus and France to prepare for IRONMAN Malaysia 2019.

Sapunov won last year’s event at the first attempt with a time of 8:33:36, and wants another solid performance in Langkawi.

“Podium finish,” was his reply when asked of his target.

Describing Malaysia as his favourite place, Sapunov also said the hot and humid conditions suits the 37-year-old. “The hotter the better for me.”

When asked on competing with multiple world champion Javier Gomez, Sapunov said it was an honour for him to line up alongside the Spaniard.

Sapunov’s notable accomplishment this year includes finishing fifth at IRONMAN Liuzhou in April.

Romain Guillaume to revert to winning formula

2017 IRONMAN Malaysia champion Romain Guillaume has tweaked his preparation for this year’s race as he bids to wrestle back the title from Sapunov.

“Last year I arrived a month before race day, and I lost a lot of energy because of the weather. I had cramps at one point, had to stop and it costed me a lot of time,” reflected Guillaume.

“So this time I have arrived 10 days before, the same time I arrived when I won in 2017. So the preparation will be the same, and I am hoping to win it again.”

But Guillaume, who won the Alpe d’Huez triathlon this year, knows he is up against 25 other world class triathletes.

“Every pro wants to win, and in these conditions anything can happen. When I won, I was leading by 11-minutes at one point, but I’m sure it will not be the same this time. I’m also positive that the winner will break my previous record. But I hope it is me!”

Guillaume was in command throughout his victory in 2017 to win in 8:32:53.

Javier Gomez’s inaugural race in Malaysia
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Javier Gómez, who was crowned the long- distance world champion and king of triathlon at the 2019 ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Championships in May, is also contender to spoil the party for Guillaume and Sapunov.

Gomez will be competing in Malaysia for the first time, and envisions a tough battle ahead in a quality class field of triathletes.

“A few of my friends had competed in previous IRONMAN Malaysia events, and had told me that this is a challenging course, so I’m here to check it out,” said Gomez, who is set to use Langkawi as training for next year’s Olympics.

“The weather here will be similar to Japan, so it will provide a good training for me ahead of the Olympics.”

Gómez is also an Olympic Silver medallist in men’s triathlon during the (2012 London Summer Olympics).

Posted in 2019, Fitness, health, International, Ironman, Ironman 70.3, Langkawi, October, press release, Sports, Triathlete, Triathlon | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

IRONMAN Langkawi 2019 – Race Eve

PRESS RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

5 WOMEN SHARE THEIR SUCCESS STORIES AS WOMEN FOR TRI TAKES ON A SIGNIFICANT MEANING AT IRONMAN MALAYSIA

KUALA LUMPUR/ LANGKAWI

(21 OCTOBER 2019):

Women For Tri has become one of the most

successful and profound programme of the IRONMAN Foundation, since taking off in 2015.

Aimed to increase female participation at all levels of Triathlon, the initiative engages female athletes across all race distances and every athlete ability.

The initiative has become nothing short of amazing, as Women For Tri can be proud of an 18% growth in female participation at the IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 events, which now totals to more than 71,000 female triathletes globally.

“IRONMAN has been championing Women For Tri for many years. We believe that it is an inclusive sport, rather than it being male dominant. Having more women in the sport would truly represent the meaning of ‘Ohana’, IRONMAN’s theme this year, and bring the family together,” said CG Lim, Regional Director, Malaysia, IRONMAN Asia.

CG’s biggest mission this year was to show greater support for female athletes through the combined efforts of Women For Tri and the ‘Ohana’ theme.

His endeavours did not disappoint, and has certainly come to fruition as the 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi received an additional 25 slots for the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Taupo, as part of Women for Tri.

These slots would however, not mean anything without the real-life tales of many Malaysian women whose sacrifice, diligence and sheer determination have helped raise the profile of women in IRONMAN.

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Iron Lady is the word for Nursya’s family.

Nursya Jusoh will be an unmistakable figure at this year’s race, sporting a full length trisuit, completed with a sports hijab, thanks to her sponsor PURPOSE.

The seasoned IRONMAN campaigner is and has been an inspiration to many Muslim women as she competes in IRONMAN dressed religious attire.

But above it all, Nursya remains a true inspiration to her family.

“I have three kids, and my second son has completed the kids triathlon twice, because of me!” says the 42-year-old housewife with a laugh.

“My husband also did IRONMAN last year because of me. He is my number one fan!”

Nursya, who will be competing in her fourth consecutive IRONMAN, has come full circle since witnessing her first IRONMAN as a spectator in 2014.

“I was so inspired by the spirit of the participants and went back with a desire to do this. I enrolled in swimming lessons, and my husband bought me a bike shortly after. I did my first triathlon in 2015 and signed up for my first IRONMAN in 2016.

“That year itself I signed up for my full IRONMAN in Langkawi, and I be returning there for a fourth time.”

Bonding with women through triathlon

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For Patricia Lim, completing the 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi relay team event with her girlfriends

Diana Hazari and Harum Delima would be to achieve their ultimate friendship goals.

“We have all done the full IRONMAN in Langkawi before and we are familiar with the routes, so this time we just want to go out there and have fun. I want all of us to finish the event with a big smile,” says the bubbly café owner who will be toeing the swim start for the first leg of their relay.

Patricia is grateful that she met both Diana and Harum through this small, yet closely knitted community of female triathletes.

“We met over four years ago, and we have bonded really well ever since. We do not train together because we do different events, but even having a meal together brings us closer.”

“I did my first relay in Port Dickson in 2015 and was inspired by many of the women out there. I now look at the older generation and draw my inspiration from them. Some of them are in their 60s, but they can complete a full IRONMAN in 12 hours. Amazing.”

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Striving even harder after accident

Diana Hazari could have allowed a bike accident that happened during her IRONMAN training to deter her from ever touching a bicycle again, let alone competing in another race. Instead, she used that setback as an added motivation to achieve her goal.

“I was training for my first IRONMAN in 2016 but had unfortunately suffered a bike accident during training just weeks before race day. I still participated in the event, but with stitches and a blurry eyesight. I could not perform and did not finish the race,” recalled the housewife.

“I was heartbroken but became more determined to complete a race, so I signed up the following year looking for ‘revenge’. I worked extra hard and was more careful during training. It paid off and I finished my first race in 2017 and become an IRONMAN.”

“It was one of the best moments of my life.”

This year, Diana will compete in the 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi relay category, doing the bike lap with memories of 2016 spurring her on to power her team.

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Doctor misdiagnosis turns out a revelation

For Patricia and Diana’s teammate, Harum Delima, every IRONMAN race was an amazing lesson in self-discovery, which saw her overcoming obesity.

On her journey to leading a healthier lifestyle and losing weight, she fell in love with running. However, the real estate agent was heartbroken after a misdiagnosis by a doctor on her knee condition. That paved her way into the IRONMAN world.

“I consulted a doctor I had never met before and he said my legs were bad for running based on my X-Ray. I cried for days because I had fell in love with running. I consulted other specialists after that and they said my legs were fine,” recalled Harum.

“I went home with renewed spirits and told my husband I was going to join a triathlon. He wasn’t interested, but the fire in me was so intense, I knew I was going to do it with or without him. He saw my passion and learnt to swim with me. After swimming 1000m non-stop, we were motivated and shopped for a bike.”

Harum’s IRONMAN adventure has taken her to Estonia, Italy and Norway, but she always remembers her IRONMAN Malaysia experience. 

“I DNF (Did Not Finish) and told myself I wasn’t going to do another one. But if I had stopped, I would not have achieved all this. Don’t succumb to pressure, move at your own pace.”

Harum will be taking on the last leg of the relay for 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi which consists of the 21.1km run. 

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Inspiration from the female Peninsular peddler

For Amelia Shelton, the demanding work as a dentist was draining both physically and mentally, leaving her little room for any outdoor activity.

“I was posted to Langkawi as a junior dental officer in 2014, and it was hard being motivated because of my job. Plus, most of my friends would rather chill at home or at the beach on their off days,’ said the Selangor-born. But a local event in Langkawi in 2017 changed that, because that’s when she came to know a certain Sandra Loh, who accomplished a unique feat of cycling across the four corners of the Malaysian Peninsular with a friend in 2009.

Sandra, a speaker at that event, came over to encourage Amelia afterwards.

“The first thing she said was to come cycle with her. She even offered to lend me her bike when I told her I didn’t have one.

We cycled across some gorgeous views that weekend and that was the start.

“I saved up and bought my first road bike after and started taking part in any events that involved cycling, swimming or running. All because of Sandra’s motivation.”

Amelia will be competing in her first IRONMAN at Langkawi this year, inspired by her mentor, family, friends and the locals.

“The locals here (in Langkawi) even have songs about IRONMAN! It is one of the biggest events here. People would just stand by the roads and cheer the athletes on. I always thought it was pretty cool, and now, I will be part of it. 

T-2 DAYS TO RACE DAY: WOMEN FOR TRI PANEL AIMSTO EMPOWER & INSPIRE

Three-Time World Champion Craig Alexander, 2019 ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Champion Javier Gomez & Popular Malaysian Personality Alif Satar adds gloss to IRONMAN as countdown to race day heats up

LANGKAWI, 24 October 2019: The excitement for the 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia in Langkawi continues to heat up as a plethora of activities are already happening to serve as the ideal appetizer ahead of race day in two days!

Women For Tri Aims to Foster Closer Bond

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There was great camaraderie and insights breakthrough at the Women For Tri panel discussion on Thursday.

The panel speakers made up of Katie Kyme, Amelia Shelton, Nur Zarina, Christine Loh and Cheryl Tay all recounted their own personal experiences, and what stood out was how IRONMAN helped them overcome adversity.

Australian Pro Athlete Katie Kyme has been an ardent IRONMAN supporter since her teens, when she would watch the IRONMAN World Championships with her brother.

Severe health conditions several years ago never diminished her love for triathlon, and she was at IRONMAN Malaysia to share her story.

“I was diagnosed with brain cancer some years ago, and I was fortunate to have overcome it, but recovery took 10 years, so I had to be patient in that process. Once my health got better, I could start with blocks of trainings,” said Kyme, who eventually went on to get her professional card.

Residing in Langkawi for the last 5 years, Dr. Amelia Shelton’s biggest barrier was getting motivated from a taxing job as a dentist which took up a lot of her time.

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The turning point came when she learnt that medical practitioners where she resides are most prone to non-communicable diseases like high blood pressure and diabetes.

“I needed to practice what I preach and make the time to get out there. Langkawi is a beautiful island, and so it wasn’t like I was out there doing a chore. I wanted to see the sun, smell the salty sea air and just be out there,” said Amelia.

“Having an indoor trainer also helped a lot. I’d cycle before going to work, and then run after work. My colleagues saw my determination and offered to do the weekend on-calls for me, so that I could train longer hours.”

Amelia also had a word of advice for women who are going through their menstrual cycles while training.

“Give your body at least a day’s rest, because hormones can fluctuate. You need to know your body well, but don’t take a long break.”

Christine Loh has become an ‘iron-woman’ to her family, from supporting her IRONMAN-fanatic husband to joining him on this journey and competing at the 2019 IRONMAN Malaysia for the first time with her children.

“When we have a bigger objective in mind, we can pull the trigger. I started by following my husband, and after that my kids were inspired and also started following. There were sacrifices to be made, but I am happy that I went through with it” said Christine.

Training and competing in full hijab gear can be challenging, especially in a tropical climate like Malaysia, where the heat can be intense and other competitors are dressed more freely.

But for hijabi triathlete Nur Zarina, pushing her physical limits in an attire which conforms to religion, and giving her best is a different experience altogether.

“It’s not a problem at all. I compete with a sports scarf with thin material, and it dries fast,” said Nur Zarina, who also shared about overcoming her fear of swimming.

When I was younger, my mom always told me not to swim as I would drown. And when I started swimming, I used to do it with my eyes shut because of the fear of piranhas and sharks!”

“A lot of people had also discouraged me, but I set my mind to do it and now I’m here competing at an IRONMAN (event).”

Singaporean Cheryl Tay had battled with body image insecurity when she was younger, in an attempt to be skinny.

“I used to run almost 27 kilometres a day to get skinny. When I failed to stick my diet, I self-harmed. Then I realized I am only hurting myself, and I started to discover what my body can do,” recalls Rock the Naked Truth Founder.

“I got introduced to weightlifting, and after that triathlon. It was one of the best things that happened to me.”

Also present at the panel was Elle Adda – the French Filipina international concert vocalist who has worked alongside Grammy award winning artists such as Sting and Chris Botti.

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The Disney music vocalist, who is a fitness enthusiast with several IRONMAN podium finishes serenaded the crowd with a song titled ”Being Alive”  to inspire them ahead of race day

Since its inception in 2015, Women For Tri has seen an 18% increase in female participation in IRONMAN & IRONMAN 70.3 events, which now totals to more than 71,000 female athletes globally.

“Let’s endure the pain and agony together” – Alif Satar

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Alif Satar will compete in the full IRONMAN this year after completing his maiden IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi last year under seven hours, a feat which proved to be a life changing experience.

 

That accomplishment also saw his swim in open water for the first time, as the popular singer and actor encouraged the participants ahead of Saturday’s race.

“I want to wish all the IRONMAN participants their best on Saturday. May we endure the pain and agony together!”.

Other renown Malaysian personalities participating in this year’s acclaimed event include Tengku Dato’ Sri Zafrul Tengku Abdul Aziz, Group CEO of CIMB, who will be racing the IRONMAN 70.3 event; multiple IRONMAN finisher Dato’ Ahmad Razlan Ahmad Razali, CEO of Sepang International Circuit taking it easy with an IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi this year, as well as former Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who will take part in his first IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi event, after a hiatus of 3 years since his maiden IRONMAN 70.3 Putrajaya in 2016.

Valuable Tips from a World Champion – Alexander Craig

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The triathletes who converged at Langkawi gained a massive boost following a valuable meet-and-greet session with three-time world champion Craig Alexander, who has been and will be one of the commentator for IRONMAN Malaysia throughout the week.

The Australian, who is also IRONMAN’s ambassador in Langkawi is now contributing back to the sport after becoming three-time world champion in 2008, 2009 and 2011.

Alexander, 46, spent time taking pictures with fans ahead of the gruelling race day, and had shared valuable advice during the meet-and-greet session.

“It is great to receive recognition in a sport we all like to excel in. So it doesn’t matter if you have been in the sport a year or two or 10, the challenge is to keep going,” said Alexander.

Javier Gomez preparing for Tokyo Olympics in Langkawi

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IRONMAN Malaysia 2019 also witnessed another world champion in the form of Javier Gomez.

The 36-year-old Spaniard is a long distance specialist and king of triathlon at the 2019 ITU Long Distance Triathlon World Championships in May.

He is looking forward to the Langkawi race, which he described as ‘not the fastest, but one of the toughest.’

“I’ve heard about how challenging this race can be in hot and humid conditions. I’m competing at the Tokyo Olympics next year, and the conditions here will provide a good learning experience,” said Gomez, who already likes the island.

“I like the course; the atmosphere is great and the locals are friendly. I’m hoping for a great race on Saturday.”

IRONMAN Malaysia and IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi will continue with its race week festivities, with IRONKIDS kicking things off on Friday.

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Posted in 2019, Athlete, Fitness, health, Inspiration, Interview, Ironman, Ironman 70.3, Langkawi, October, press release, Sports, Triathlete, Triathlon | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

District Race Kuala Lumpur 2019 by AIA Vitality

District Race Kuala Lumpur 2019 by AIA Vitality

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Editor’s Note 

MY wife Maryati & I were invited to join the District Race by AIA VITALITY in Kepong Metropolitan Park on 6 Oct 2019. Being our first time to join this kind of explore race, we were excited with the prospect of being able to try out a new outdoor activity. 

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It was like no other running event that we’ve ever joined before. Firstly, every runner had to run with their smartphones.

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Secondly, there was no fixed route, and thirdly, the goal was not about who finished fastest, but rather, we had to collect as many points as possible by passing through several fixed checkpoints and complete certain challenges in a fixed duration. 

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The District Race which is owned and managed by District Technologies, is more of a fitness-cum-treasure hunt than the usual running event.

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Nevertheless, it is a fun outdoor game for those who are looking for new ways to raise their fitness level, and at the same time, the explorers can discover some hidden places of a city. 

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▶️ Race & Explore Kepong : More than 200 participants gathered at the Kepong Metropolitan Park on 13 October 2019 (Sunday) for this race familiarisation session as part of the preparation for the upcoming District Race KL by AIA Vitality which will be held in Dataran Merdeka on 03 November 2019. 

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Since this event attracted many casual runners, families and youngsters, it was apt that there was a long Zumba warmup session before the 30 minute race.

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Afterwards, the participants were provided with a light meal courtesy of our awesome host AIA Vitality.

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🧭🏃🏿Event  H. I. G. H. L. I. G. H. T. S. 

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✔️ Learn How To Use District Race App

✔️ Run Kepong Metropolitan Park Grid

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✔️ Support AIA Vitality Healthy Lifestyle

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✔️ Great Zumba Pre-Race Workout

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✔️ Meet District Runners over refreshments

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✔️ Prizes For Top 3 Racers

▶️ Fitness For All: Being a self-proclaimed Fitness Lifestyle Ambassador for the past 9 years, I applaud AIA Vitality (Main Sponsor of District Race) for organising this kind of inclusive Healthy Activity which encourages the public to look after our health better in a sustainable manner.

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The event’s key underlying message was, “For the good of the greater community, keeping fit and healthy is our individual responsibility, and we can all do it together on a regular basis in a fun & effective way!” 

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▶️ New Running Concept: As Chris Cable, Head of Events, District Technologies pointed out, “District Race is not about replacing running events, but rather, it offers a fresh way to keep fit by using modern technology.”

Furthermore, in line with the progress of technology and to keep the District Race fresh, District Technologies are constantly upgrading and expanding their offered features and services to the urban fitness & running community everywhere. 

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Virgin Explorers: Eventhough District Race Manager Adrees had thoroughly briefed us on the race guidelines and its mechanics beforehand, newbies like Maryati & I still found it useful to gain hands on experience during the race itself through our sometimes comical trial and error actions. In fact, part of the enjoyment was being able to figure out how to interpret properly the instructions on our smartphone, while searching for the actual checkpoints, as well as completing the given challenges. Here, our multitasking skills and ability to remain calm under pressure were put to the test. 

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Easy  To Start: Watch the following videos to learn how easy it is to upload and activate your District Race account and join Malaysia’s coolest running apps! Once you are ready, you can search for the nearest district race location and plan your race exactly how you want it. Remember, you don’t have to reach the checkpoints in the given numbered sequence, and it is advisable that you prioritise your race strategy by aiming first for those challenges which offer the most points. 

Video 1 : How To Start (Part 1)

Video 2 : How To Start (Part 2)

Video 3 : How To Start (Part 3)

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Everybody Wins: There is a race leaderboard for you to check your total points and performance  against the other top players. Perhaps, you just want to compete against your own running group or friends. Either way, you’re still a winner because you are keeping active and in good shape without even realising it! 

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VIDEO Vault by Happy Runner

Video 4 ~ Meeting Point

Video 5 ~ Zumba Warm-up

Video 6 ~ Emcee Greeting

Video 7 ~ Green Team

Video  8 ~ Laman Cergas AIA Vitality

Video 9 ~ Insane Zumba

Video 10 ~ Zumba Moves

Video 11 ~ District Race Newbie

Video 12 ~ Go Right or Left

Video 13 ~ We’re Off

Video 14 ~ Lost In Translation

▶️ More About District #exploreevents

🧭For those looking for new ways to improve their fitness, District uses the joy of discovery and uncovering hidden experiences throughout your own city to motivate active living at any level.

🌁District brings cities to life with different series of checkpoints and challenges spread across many neighbourhoods in the city. The aim of the game is to collect as many points, badges and rewards as possible within the time limit. There’s no set route or distance, so plan and create your own strategy based on your strengths. We’re sure that you will go further than you ever thought possible.

🌳Starting in Laman Cergas AIA Vitality, the District #exploreevents, will bring like-minded explorers together to share their experiences, and discover new corners of their city to build the community of urban running and exploration.

We Love KL: Let’s Explore & Race around our glorious capital city Kuala Lumpur and jam with thousands of participants like there’s no tomorrow. 

Hurry & Join the BIGGEST DISTRICT RACE in Asia ~ the District Race Kuala Lumpur by AIA Vitality 2019 on 3 Nov 2019… To REGISTER.. ➡️

https://exploredistrict.com/en/events/kuala-lumpur

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Special Acknowledgements ~ Many thanks to AIA Vitality, Chris, Adrees & Shanti for hosting a wonderful event.

MORE RUNNING NEWS.. ➡️

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*Disclaimer*
To the best of my knowledge, all of the information provided herein is accurate at the time of publishing and the views expressed are based on my own personal opinions and findings, and they don’t necessarily reflect the views of the Product Manufacturer, Event Organiser or any Third Party unless explicitly specified otherwise.

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About The Author

Gus Ghani is the Founder of Running Toons and Virtual Sports ; a HIIT Fitness Coach, and Magazine Columnist.  He has contributed numerous insightful articles to The Star newspaper, Running Malaysia Magazine, and Cycling Malaysia Magazine. LIKE Happy Runner for RUNNING UPDATES, Gus Rider for CYCLING NEWS, Gus Ghani for SPORTS INFOTAINMENT and FOLLOW gusghani @IG for LIFESTYLE. 

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Posted in 2019, Concept Run, Couple Running, District Race, Event, Family, Fitness, health, Kepong, New Event, October, Outdoor, Sports, Video | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

KLSCM 2019 DAY 1 Official Press Release 

KLSCM 2019 DAY 1 Official Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

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11th EDITION OF KLSCM GETS UNDERWAY WITH TWO-DAY FORMAT

Kids Dash, 5km and Friendship Run kick-off event on the first day

KUALA LUMPUR, Saturday, 28 September 2019: The Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon (KLSCM) 2019, now held in a two-day format, got off to a fun start with the Kids Dash and 5km categories, along with the Friendship Run at Dataran Merdeka this morning. Unlike last year, the 5km category was brought forward to today to allow for more capacity in the 10km, Full and Half Marathon categories which will be held tomorrow.

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The Kids Dash also used to take place on the main Race Day where the kids would run in a looped course near the Royal Selangor Club but beginning last year, the 1km and 3km categories were held the day before. This is intended to give the kids’ categories more prominence on their own and also the privilege of starting and finishing under the Main Race Arch on Dataran Merdeka. It would also allow parents participating in the event tomorrow to devote more time and attention to their children’s race.

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Having the Kids Dash categories on the preceding day also allowed these categories to be expanded so that 1,000 children could take part this year compared to 500 in previous years. “The Kids Dash is an important area of development for us as we want to inspire children to take to running from a young age. Obesity, and even childhood obesity is increasingly becoming a concern here in Malaysia and running is one of the easiest physical activities for anyone to do to keep fit and healthy. Encouraging children early in their lives can help them form good habits that they can carry on with later in life,” said Gloria Ng, Director of Dirigo Events, the owner and organiser of KLSCM.

Speed categories for both distances were introduced this year to give a more competitive edge to the categories and to separate the faster children from the fun runners. In the 1km Kids Dash, which is for children aged between 6-9 years, the Boy’s Category was won by Wong Jun You in a time of 04:24:74 minutes, followed by Shaashwath Sivakumar who posted 04:30:14 and Wong Yin Heng, who came in third with a time of 04:31:95. Zhang Yuxuan won the Girl’s category in a time of 05:08:22 minutes with second place going to Nurin Qaizara binti Mohd Hafiz who finished in 05:15:03 and Nur Afina Zahra binti Zakwan Fasha came in third in 05:32:86.

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Caption: Mastura Adnan, Head of Brand, Sponsorship and Sustainability (far left), Sameer Sharma, Head of Wealth Management (2nd from left), Jennifer Kang, Head of Corporate Affairs and Brand Marketing (far right)

In the 3km Kids Dash, which is for children aged between 10-12 years, the Boy’s Category was won by Jin Khoo in a time of 10:01:48 minutes, followed by Muhammad Iddin Mubin bin Rozmi who posted 10:34:13 and Justin Tan Weng Teng, who came in third with a time of 10:47:87. Purnamrtta Aditya Ujjayni Kasyapa Gunala won the Girl’s category in a time of 13:02:80 minutes with second place going to Shanice Tang who finished in 13:24:99 and Nurul Izzah Najwa bt Norzaidi rounded up the third position with a time of 13:28:43.

A Speed category was also introduced in the 5km distance this year, and those running in this category would have their timing recorded, with medals provided to the winners. In the 5km Open of the inaugural Speed category, Ho Sze Hou from China came in first in a time of 19:05 minutes while Tse Wai Hung from Hong Kong came in second with a time of 21:28 and third was Krishna Kumar a/l Jayaram from Malaysia who completed the route in 22:17.

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Caption : Suhaimi Abdul Hamid, Chief Executive Officer, Standard Chartered Saadiq Malaysia (far left) and Abrar A. Anwar, MD and CEO, Standard Chartered Malaysia (far right)

The 5km Women’s Open Speed category was won by Tung Yee Man from Hong Kong in a time of 26:41:28 minutes while Tse Choi Yuk, also from Hong Kong came in second posting 26:41:46 and Cheung Ho Lun from China placed third in a time of 26:50:71.

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The Friendship Run has become a staple in the KLSCM Race Programme after its debut in 2015 and is meant for Full Marathon runners to have a warm up run the day before their big event.

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Local and international runners come dressed in all kinds of cool outfits which add fun and colour to the proceedings, with each runner also given a helium balloon with the flag of his/her country printed on it. It ends with a pasta and carbo-loading breakfast after the run where runners get to meet each other and forge friendships.

Abrar A. Anwar, Standard Chartered Malaysia’s MD and CEO also participated this year to continue from his debut participation last year. 

“I really enjoyed myself last year and it was amazing to meet all these local and international runners brimming with positivity and camaraderie,” said Abrar. “As title sponsors for over a decade now, we are truly convinced that this event has a powerful ability to unite people from all walks of life. It is an honour to support an iconic sporting event such as this which has come to exemplify the coming together of a diversity of nationalities, backgrounds and ages,” he added.

The Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon has grown to become the premier running event in Malaysia that draws thousands of local and international runners to the country whilst firmly establishing Malaysia in the global running calendar. The 11th edition of the event will be the largest yet with 40,000 runners in total taking part, and will once again see sponsorship from Title Sponsor Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia, along with Under Armour, 100 Plus, Seiko, Jaybird, TudungPeople, Banana Boat and Pacific Regency and DBKL as venue hosts.

For more information and updates on KLSCM, please visit:

Facebook    : http://www.facebook.com/SCKLmarathon

Twitter    : https://twitter.com/scklmarathon 

Instagram    : https://www.instagram.com/klscmarathon/ 

Website    : www.kl-marathon.com

For more information, please contact: 

Suthan Narayanan | 603.7621.7787 | suthan@dirigo.com.my

For more information on Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon:

Gloria Ng | 603.7621.7787 | gloria.ng@dirigo.com.my 

For more information on Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia Berhad:

Jennifer Kang | 603. 7682.9779 | jennifer.kang@sc.com 

Geraldine Tan | 603. 7682.9166 | geraldine.tan@sc.com

### End ###

About the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon 2019

Back for the 11th year, the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon takes place on 28 & 29 September 2019. The marathon, owned and organised by Dirigo Events, will see participation from 40,000 runners, ranging from elite athletes to first-time distance runners. A truly international event, the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon boasts participants from all over Malaysia and over 70 countries. The Kuala Lumpur Marathon Standard Chartered 2019 remains Malaysia’s premier running event with top runners competing for a total of USD 125,000 in prize money.

For more information on the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon, please log onto:  http://www.kl-marathon.com/ and http://www.facebook.com/SCKLmarathon

Standard Chartered Malaysia

Standard Chartered Bank, a member of the Standard Chartered Group was established in Malaysia in 1875. As Malaysia’s first bank, Standard Chartered leads the way through product innovation, consistent and strong growth performance and sustainability initiatives. The Bank provides a comprehensive range of financial solutions to corporates, institutions and individuals through its network of branches across Malaysia. The Bank has an Islamic banking subsidiary, Standard Chartered Saadiq; a global shared services centre, Standard Chartered Global Business Services; a sales arm, Price Solutions and an offshore facility in Labuan. 

Standard Chartered employs over 7,000 employees in all its Malaysian operations.

Standard Chartered

We are a leading international banking group, with a presence in 60 of the world’s most dynamic markets, and serving clients in a further 85. Our purpose is to drive commerce and prosperity through our unique diversity, and our heritage and values are expressed in our brand promise, Here for good.

Standard Chartered PLC is listed on the London and Hong Kong Stock Exchanges as well as the Bombay and National Stock Exchanges in India.

For more stories and expert opinions please visit Insights at sc.com. Follow Standard Chartered on TwitterLinkedIn and Facebook.

About Dirigo Events

The Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon is owned by Dirigo Events Sdn. Bhd, an award-winning event management company founded in 2011 by Rainer Biemans and Gloria Ng. The event not only draws a large number of Malaysian runners, but attracts runners from more than 70 countries around the world. Rainer Biemans and Gloria Ng have a combined experience of over 49 years in executing and creating world-class and impactful events for international clients around the world such as Europe, Brunei, India and Singapore. 

Apart from owning the Kuala Lumpur Standard Chartered Marathon, Dirigo also provides operational services for other mass participation events.

For more information on Dirigo Events, please contact +603 7621 7787 or email dirigo@dirigo.com.my

*****

 

Posted in 2019, 3km, 5km, breakfast, Children, Dataran Merdeka, Dirigo Events, Family, Fitness, Fun Run, Happy Runner, KLSCM, Kuala Lumpur, Media, press release, Race Organiser, Running, September | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New Ironman 70.3 Desaru Coast 2020

New Ironman 70.3 Desaru Coast 2020

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Editor’s Note

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Aside from the existing Langkawi Ironman, this newly introduced Ironman 70.3 Desaru Coast is a welcome boost for Malaysia’s Sporting Industry, as well as for Tourism Malaysia.

No doubt, having a second Ironman 70.3 in Malaysia will excite and motivate more Malaysians to showcase their Triathlon skills, and use it as a springboard event to pursuit the ultimate triathletes’ dream of being a full-fledged Ironman. 

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IM in MALAYSIA

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IRONMAN Langkawi started off in 2000, and ran for a decade and was reintroduced back in 2014 with the support of Malaysia Major Events under the Ministry of Tourism.

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How Did Ironman Originated? 

Who Is The Driver of IRONMAN Asia Pacific? 

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GEOFF MEYER’S PROFILE

Managing Director of IRONMAN Asia

After competing in his first triathlon event in 1986, Geoff Meyer caught the thrill of the ‘events world’ and has always had some level of involvement since.

Now, with over 15 years’ Event management experience, Geoff has worked extensively across Australia, New Zealand and Asia.

Geoff’s team at IRONMAN Asia Pacific are responsible for delivering over 45 events in the region annually and his vast experience includes all facets of event management from development to delivery.

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Along with the IRONMAN suite of events, Geoff has been key in the delivery and management of several National and World Championship Events including ITU World Cup, ITU World Championships, the UCI Road Cycling World Championships and Auckland Marathon.

Geoff is a strong and respected team leader, very experienced at managing the triple constraint for projects: cost, time and quality; and is committed to the delivery of consistently professional, safe, world class events that generate excitement, inspiration, passion, personal growth and participation for all ages and abilities. 

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🏊‍♂️🚴‍♂️🏃🏻‍♂️Launching of IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast, Triathlon, Sprints & IRONKIDS Desaru Coast..

Launch Date | 27 Aug 2019

Launch Venue | Westin Hotel KL

Race Date | 17~19 April 2020

Race Venue | Desaru Coast

Categories | Ironman 70.3, Triathlon, Sprints & IRONKIDS 

LIVE VIDEOS

Brand New Hotels

Sports Tourism Hub

400 In Pre-Sales

For All Levels

World Championship Points

Several Hotels Available

All Systems Go

Westin Hotel KL

💥.. Keep updated with sporting NEWS & VIEWS.. 

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Website – www.gusghani.com

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Registration is now open! www.IRONMAN.com/Desaru70.3

DID YOU KNOW..? 

✔️So far, 15,000 have completed Ironman Malaysia. 

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✔️Uncle YEE SZE MUN is the first Ironman Malaysia HALL OF FAME inductee. His ‘never give up’ attitude, and his generosity, kindness & humility inspire many Malaysians.. 

Special Acknowledgements

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Thank you Ironman Malaysia for inviting the author to the exciting launch of the brand new Ironman 70.3 Desaru Coast 2020, and like many fans of IRONMAN, we are looking forward to this inaugural Swim, Bike & Run in the beautiful southern tip of Peninsular Malaysia. 

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

DESARU COAST MALAYSIA TO HOST INAUGURAL DESARU COAST MULTISPORT

FESTIVAL PRESENTED BY IRONMAN

  • Held in southern Malaysia’s tropical seaside destination from 17-19 April 2020
  • IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast offers 60 qualifying race slots for the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships IMG_20190827_173233_692
  • First-timer friendly formats include 5150 Desaru Coast, Sprint Desaru Coast and IRONKIDS Desaru Coast

KUALA LUMPUR / TAMPA, Fla. (27 August 2019)

– IRONMAN, a Wanda Sports Group company, today announced its event expansion in Asia with a brand-new multisport festival in Desaru Coast, Malaysia.

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Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN will be held from 17-19 April 2020; the festival is the first of its kind in Asia, and will comprise an IRONMAN® 70.3® triathlon, 5150 TM Triathlon along with IRONKIDS® and Sprint races.

The multisport festival weekend will feature IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast, the latest addition to the IRONMAN 70.3 Asia race calendar.

The 5150 Desaru Coast, Sprint Desaru Coast and IRONKIDS Desaru Coast races will provide a fresh challenge for newcomers in the sport of triathlon.

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Geoff Meyer, Managing Director of IRONMAN Asia, said, “We are thrilled to announce the launch of Asia’s first-ever multisport festival, a testament to the growing appetite for triathlon in Asia, and IRONMAN’s commitment to developing the sport in the region. The three-day event is designed to offer athletes a wider selection of race destinations and distances in Asia, also attracting newcomers.”

Situated on the southern tip of Peninsular Malaysia, Desaru Coast presents a scenic Race course with a pristine 17-km beachfront that faces eastwards over the clear ocean waters with white sandy beaches and warm tropical weather. The course will start with a single-loop 1.9-km (1.2-mile) swim, with a start line located footsteps away from the official hotel, The Westin Desaru Coast Resort.

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This is followed by a 90-km (56-mile) ride on a two-loop bike course along the coastline on smooth, flat roads. Athletes will then take on a 21.1-km (13.1-mile) shaded run course to the finish line at The Westin Desaru Coast Resort.

The race offers 60 qualifying slots to the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Taupō, New Zealand taking place on November 28-29, 2020.

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“The festival environment will provide athletes of all ages and abilities with a truly unique race experience. The combination of sea and jungle make for the perfect location for athletes to enjoy their surroundings while competing. With the support of the Malaysian government, we are excited to continue bringing endurance sport to more people in Malaysia and welcome more athletes into our IRONMAN Ohana,” said CG Lim, Regional Director, Malaysia, IRONMAN Asia.

A new, integrated coastal destination resort in Malaysia, Desaru Coast is infused with globally renowned hotels and resorts, two championship golf courses, a conference centre, and an adventure waterpark. The destination enjoys a moderate, windy climate year-round with a natural landscape to Welcome athletes from all over the world.

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“We are delighted to host the first ever Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN in Asia and look forward to welcoming not just the athletes, but also their families and friends to Desaru Coast.

With great climate and terrain, we hope that by hosting more international sporting events like Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN, we are able to propel Johor and Desaru Coast’s reputation as a preferred sports tourism destination in the Southeast Asian region,” said Roslina Arbak, Chief Executive Officer, Desaru Development Holdings One Sdn Bhd (DH1).

The Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN is part of the destination’s annuale events programme, a curation of special events focusing on sports, lifestyle, and entertainment, designed exclusively to nurture Desaru Coast as a signature events destination. Located in the south eastern region of Malaysia, Desaru Coast can be easily accessed by land, sea and air, and offers a premium blend of tourism offerings which not only cater to high calibre sporting events, but also allow athletes and visitors alike an endless opportunity for escape.

IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast and 5150 Desaru Coast will join the IRONMAN Asia circuit as the third and fourth races in Malaysia, adding to existing races which includes IRONMAN Malaysia and IRONMAN 70.3 Langkawi.

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Registration is now open for the Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN.

For more information, visit www.ironman.com/desaru70.3 and

www.ironman.com/5150desaru.

For more information on the IRONMAN brand and global event series, visit www.ironman.com.

###

About The IRONMAN Group

As part of Wanda Sports Group, the IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN®

Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN®70.3® Triathlon Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series®, IRONKIDS®, ITU World Triathlon Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon and The Sun-Herald City2Surf® presented by Westpac, Ultra-Trail ® World Tour events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world.

Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with more than 235 events across 55+ countries. For more information, visit www.ironman.com.

About Wanda Sports Group

Wanda Sports Group (Nasdaq: WSG) is a leading global sports events, media and marketing platform with a mission to unite people in sports and enable athletes and fans to live their passions and dreams. Through our businesses, including Infront and The IRONMAN Group, we have significant intellectual property rights, long-term relationships and broad execution capabilities, enabling us to deliver unrivalled sports event experiences, creating access to engaging content and building inclusive communities. We offer a comprehensive array of events, marketing and media services through three primary segments: Mass Participation, Spectator Sports and Digital, Production, Sports Solutions

(DPSS). Our full-service platform creates value for our partners and clients as well as other stakeholders in the sports ecosystem, from rights owners, to brands and advertisers, and to fans and athletes.

Headquartered in Beijing, China, Wanda Sports Group has more than 60 offices and 1,600 employees around the world.

About Desaru Coast

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Desaru Coast is curated as a new integrated destination resort in Malaysia with a portfolio of globally renowned hotels and resorts, namely Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast, The Westin Desaru Coast Resort, Anantara Desaru Coast Resort & Villas, as well as One&Only Desaru Coast. Desaru Coast is also home to Desaru Coast Adventure Waterpark – one of the world’s biggest water parks, Desaru Coast Conference Centre – a fully equipped conference facility, The Els Club Desaru Coast – 45 holes. 

*Disclaimer*
To the best of my knowledge, all of the information provided herein is accurate at the time of publishing and the views expressed are based on my own personal opinions and findings, and they don’t necessarily reflect the views of the Product Manufacturer, Event Organiser or any Third Party unless explicitly specified otherwise.

About The Author

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Gus Ghani is the Founder of Running Toons and Virtual Sports ; a HIIT Fitness Coach, and Magazine Columnist.  He has contributed numerous insightful articles to The Star newspaper, Running Malaysia Magazine, and Cycling Malaysia Magazine. LIKE Happy Runner for RUNNING UPDATES, Gus Rider for CYCLING NEWS, Gus Ghani for SPORTS INFOTAINMENT and FOLLOW gusghani @IG for LIFESTYLE. 

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