Once Upon A SCKLM 2016
Well, yes, I like to start Standard Chartered Kuala Lumpur 2016 story with such title because SCKLM has always been full of dramas and unexpected twists and turns. As Race Director Rainer likes to remind us, when you have 35,000 Runners, you will invariably have 35,000 opinions on all minute aspects of KL Prima Donna Marathon. Actually, the record participants so far, as of 2014 was 32,000. Last year’s 35,000 does not count because We All DNS!! This year, the target will be a new record of 35,000, and Rainer believes Dataran Merdeka can accommodate upto 40,000 Runners. There will be 1,600 volunteers employed during Race Day, and 500 volunteers will be assigned for REPC. I’d you want to be a volunteer, keep an eye out for announcements at Dirigo Events website around June 2016.
How Was The Date of 7th August 2016 Selected?
According to Rainer, they had to consult all the sponsors & partners, and make sure President Obama will not be visiting Malaysia that weekend. “We got the written blessings of all the parties involved, thankfully!” declared Rainer. The most important factor affecting the success of SCKLM 2016, will not be President Obama nor the Sports Ministry or any other big shots! The SCKLM 2016 will hinge on the mercy of our unpredictable weather patterns. As I write this, we are experiencing an out-of-the-blue heatwave. Nobody including the best weathermen can predict what will happen on 7th August. My tip is to buy insurance against event cancellation as part of the registration option. Unfortunately, after 8 glorious years, MSIG has pulled-out of SCKLM, so I am no longer sure if or how Runners can buy any insurance officially with special discounts. Maybe Dirigo can clear this insurance matter in due time.
By default, the Full Marathoners will always have the best deals because they train the hardest and they run the furthest. So, to make-up for last year’s disappointment, 2015 Full Marathoners will be given the privilege to register for the first 1,000 slots to be opened tomorrow (around midday). There is a total of 7,000 slots for FM, 9,000 for HM, and 5,000 for 10km and 5km distances, etc. If my information is correct, the other 2015 registered Runners will be given first rights to register from 22-March to 19-April. Thereafter, the registration will be opened for the general public. So, you could say that this gradual opening of registration in waves could help prevent system overload.
Before You Register
This year marks a big turning point for the Full Marathon because there will be a check point system situated before and after the DUKE & AKLEH Highway rams to stop Runners who do not meet the prescribed cut-off time, but finish cut-off time has increased to 7 hours. So, my advise for FM newbies is to RESPECT THE DISTANCE. If you have any doubt about meeting those predetermined check point times, then downgrade yourself to 21km or 10km, because there is no worse feeling than being dragged on the sweeper bus after 30km with NOTHING TO SHOW for all you efforts in the end. I did suggest to Dirigo to drop-off the sweeper bus passengers about 1km from the finishing line in order to let the slow Runners experience how it feels to cross the line. Most of the other bloggers argued against such idea because you have earn the medal & Finisher Tee. If I was Race Director, I would give every FM Finishers Medal, as only you know yourself what you had to go through to get to the end. After all, the cost of the Medals have already been paid for. Heck, but I ain’t no expert.
This year, apart from the 3 month training clinics, there will be 4 new training sessions for the Kids. How cute will that be, watching those little happy running feet in action. Giving children proper professional running guidance, and to expose them to running skills early should be applauded. Despite our Running Bodies who failed to include Full Marathon, 10km & Triathlon in the SEA Games which we are hosting. Atleast, we did not give Inline Skating 12 gold medals as a SEA Games event like what Indonesia did!
More Pasta, MORE RUN
Another exciting NEW FEATURES being introduced this year will be the FUN FELLOWSHIP 7KM Run which will be held on Saturday ,race eve,, together with KL Car Free Day. You can also purchase tickets to the PASTA PARTY which will be held on the same Saturday. Book early because the seats are limited to 700 pax only.
THE COMEBACK MARATHON
After the massive disappointment of SCKLM 2015 non-starter, SCKLM will bounce back stronger, bigger and better weather permitting because of ONE REASON. The reason is the fact Dirigo Events always strive to give the participating runners the best possible experience every year. Human nature tends to make people lazy after they have experienced success, and I have seen a few running events which started well in the beginning,, but the lack of motivation to improve has led a potentially great event dropped down in quality standard. With SCKLM Team, this will not happen because the gang is proud of the good work that they have built over the years, and they never take for granted the support of the runners, the running community, their sponsors and partners, plus it is a national duty for SCKLM to upgrade themselves year-by-year.
The prize-money remains at a decent RM480,000, and alot of money will be raised by the kind-hearted Runners for charities again
I wish all the parties involved in planning, assembling, and executing SCKLM 2016 every success because if it is not Them, then who can do it so efficiently. To my fellow Runners, my message is to be patient, and ask yourself HOW YOU WANT TO FINISH SCKLM 2016…
I know more or less how Rainer will react to my expressions because he is predictable, and for a massive undertaking such as SCKLM, you need stability, reliability and continuity to make the MAGIC HAPPEN!
Gus is the Chief Entertainment Officer of Running Toons and he is passionate about endurance sports. As a sports writer, he has contributed numerous insightful articles to The Star newspaper, Running Malaysia magazine, Cycling Malaysia magazine, Cycling Evolution magazine, Swim Bike Run magazine and more. LIKE Happy Runner and follow gusghani @Instagram.