Cool crisp air, lush greenery, breathtaking scenery.
It was hard to deny that the organisers for TriFactor Run this year has indeed picked a paradise for our race participants to enjoy the race.
Before the sun has peered out from the clouds, the 31.5km and 21km runners have already started their races and were drenched in their perspiration. As the pathways were still pretty dark, road marshals can be seen cycling around with big headlights situated at the front of their bikes, to make sure that no one is lost during the race itself and also, to ensure the safety of the runners. The emcee and the DJ were already cooking up the atmosphere when I reached there whilst many runners were busy doing their warm-up exercises and taking pictures of the picturesque scenery that Punggol Waterway provides us with. It was nice of the emcee to remind us of race etiquettes like, keep to the left if you are a slow runner, since it is something that is usually left unobserved in many races that I have participated.
At 7.30 am sharp, the race horn sounded. As this is a competitive race in which many seasoned marathon and even, triathlon participants do join, it was inevitable for me to feel the competitiveness of the race right at the start of it. I had to run at a faster pace than my usual pace to feel that I am not obstructing anyone’s progress.
A few sections of the race routes were pretty narrow, eg, at the start of the race ( the Nature Cove area) . Yet, this was compensated by the charming scenery that Punggol Waterway provides us with- a perfect illustration of Singapore’s progress together with Singapore’s reputation as a “Garden City”. The construction of several HDB flats (and the upcoming Punggol Safra Club) were complemented by the wide variety of flora and fauna in the park itself. Not to forget, we get to run along 2 of the bridges that allowed us to indulge ourselves in a better view of the surroundings of the park. Besides that, the routes had clear signages – how far we have ran (for all of the race categories) and which way to turn to. In fact, there was also plenty of water stations (about 1 for every 2 to 3km), road marshals and not forgetting, medics.
Yet, due to my experiences in joining races, it is hard to not notice the areas of improvement that the organisers for the race can pay attention to.
First of all, the location of the race was pretty inconvenient. In order to get there on time, I believed many of us who do not drive depended on cabs. It would be great if shuttlebuses are provided. Moreover, I believed that for the 31.5km and 21km runners, it was pretty tiresome and boring to run around the same route thrice/ twice respectively. Besides, the ending section of the race route was pretty narrow, causing it hard for us to sprint and overtake other runners. Also, there was little restrooms along the race route.
However, with such awesome scenery and the opportunity given to run in a location that many races have not tried hosting before, the ‘complaints’ I have for this race will not deter me from participating in it again. As for sports- lovers out there who prefer competitive cycling or swimming, you will be elated to know that the Tri factor series caters for you too. So watch out for the Tri Factor series next year and be a part of one of the most popular races in Singapore!