I have to say, this is one of my favorite 21k routes! Adidas King of the Road South East Asia Championship 2011 under RunRio was a success and I am proud to promote this to foreigners for making it work with all the shortcomings from last year!
The 21k gunstart was 5am and most of my Barneys are in their 16.8k, the international distance and I know they will make a race for it so this is the first time that I am racing alone in a 21k race. So I squeezed myself in the crowd, praying and praying that I’ll make them proud as well to myself, my peers and my idols and coaches!
The first 8k is within BGC and I have to say, with the longer nights and seeing the half crescent was a sight that I actually liked the route of the British International School (that for the loyal readers, you know I hate this part) and seeing the usual fast people: Beep and Kampuger. Wow, I must be doing well!
By the turn to the Starbucks Drive-Thru BGC, I heard runners speaking in English, talking about their weights. I thought the Pinoy Biggest Loser contestants joined the race (then I heard later they did! Good for you!!!) but it was the Powerpuff Boys, this unique site is one of the priceless moments for me because these guys are way too fast (then I learned they are in for 16.8k, wow!).
When I finally saw Buendia flyover, one of my favorite challenges, I ran the whole way. I know I can do this, this time! Allan Tauyan made my day as he cheered “Gravity, Gravity!” It was already 11k and that started my appreciation with the race because as early as that, we have crossed halfway the race and we just need to do a full stretch of Buendia.
As I tried pacing faster than my usual, I see Sir Ton Concepcion as he was in his fast constant pace and wheezing in and out of some runners. And Rovilson Fernandez, that tall Amazing Race Asia partner of Mark Nelson, was just admirable because he was strong and he was really fast sans his height! When I ran beside Lara Parpan (Women’s Health EIC) in the last 2k, I thought well this is nice, a triathlete running alongside me and yes, there she goes…so strong! And of course, most of the runners were cheering for Kuya Kim Atienza who did (as he described it) slow, constant pace but I thought otherwise, because too me he’s fast (Me the lazy kid). These guys, you have to run in constant pace and really push yourself hard so you can get your ideal time!
As I crossed the finish line, it was like Condura this year that it made it’s finish line in the heart of Boni High Street which is a great thing! The activity was located at the far left enough for the crowd to get together, the claiming of medal area at the right. Hydration was flooded of Viva Mineral Water and Powerade. I was looking for more sponge though but all is forgiven because I see all runners racing strong! Cheers to Coach Rio dela Cruz and Adidas for actually redeeming itself.
My Barneys and I went to KFC and had breakfast and shared a good laugh. Dear Adidas, you should retain and set a budget for aNR as most of us started here and enjoyed the runs guided by your most humble and great coaches and leaders.
So I guess I’m going to join adidas KOTR again next year for the 3rd time!
And seeing all running friends, running idols and running teams in this event: PRICELESS!