Saturday, October 10, 2009

Desaru Long Distance Triathlon 2009

The Desaru - Pengerang Long Distance and Sprint Triathlon has long been a favourite among both Malaysian and Singaporean triathletes for a long time now. Every year, hordes of athletes, their families and bikes make the annual pilgramage to Desaru to take part just to be a part of this event... and so did I this year. The event was held on the first Sat of August this year, and as usual, I went up with a new bunch of friends. Thanks goes to Teryn who organised everything sui sui for me.. hehe... 

Went up on Friday by ferry, and met Tommy and his bunch of personal trainers who were going up to race as well. It's kinda interesting, cos this is the first time I went up to Desaru with my bike from Changi Village Ferry Terminal. The ferry ride was about 45mins long and from there, we took the organiser's bus/truck (humans on bus/ bikes on trucks) to the race hotel. Arrived, collected the bikes and collected the race pack at the hotel. Couldn't figure out which room I was sharing with Teryn, so sticked to Tommy's group while waiting for her to arrive... (actually, they went for test swim, bike, run, I just watch TV in the room.. talk about slacking)

In the evening, Teryn arrived, with Chris... and I got to settle into my room. Parked my bike, and slacked summore... Teryn couldn't believe how slack I was when I said I just wanted to lie down... haha.. but as my ole adage goes...  "why run when u can walk, why walk when u can stand, why stand when u can sit, and why sit when u can lie down." Anyways, Teryn brought her wheelchair down to Desaru too.. and well.. at least we have a spare chair :). That night, malay food dinner at Renggit and Chris spent time sourcing out ice, and drinks for the race the next day.... and that night too, I found out what was so special about the race (at least, why its so special to me)

The race is really simple, the fees really cheap compared to other similar distance races. That means, very few aid stations along the way. For the biking length, only one refilling station, and its a do urself station. For the run, more aid stations but mainly water. And this race is known to be a HOT race. So, to help aid the participants, each big group comes and sets up their own aid stations... really... HUGE groups come and set up aid stations... with 100plus, water, sem bueh (Chris swears by it... so I'm gonna test it out in IMWA), etc etc etc.. hehe.. this is the first time I've been in a race ran by the supporters.. hehe.. and it was fun planning it out.. since then, I've decided to be a aid station manager one day.. and practice the zen of aid station management.. 

OK.. so all set out... in bed, and slept sui sui all throughout the nite (got some noise when Chong arrived.. but I was so zzzz)

Woke up in the morning, got some breakfast (found out tt Chris already went to buy ice and set up the station) and got number-ed with the markers Teryn had(this girl really thinks of everything). Hung the bike at my spot, said Gd Luck to everyone, smiled abit, arrange Transitions stuff, and head on to the beach for the swim. Wah...really washing machine waves oooo. Had a short fun time trying to jump the waves.. haha ... Uncle Chan gave a small speech again while I was hanging with Toh Chen... and made a pact to swim SLOWLY together.. hehe...countdown as usu.. and off we go!!!

As usu, open water swim.. got kicked a few times, and one quite serious one which almost dislocated my jaw.. I couldn't open my mouth.. sighs.. stopped a while to hit it back.. The swim was short, apparently, it was shortened.. good good.. I'm not a good swimmer.

Came out, showered, (should have brought a shampoo or sth) and went to T1. Took my time as usual, and started the biking leg. Had to clip in and pedal as hard as I can up the short steep slope coming outta T1.. omos fell down. Biking was ok, except that my chain popped out 3x during shifting gears.. need to service liao. 

I look cool here (courtesy of Bernard Soh.. :) TQ)

T2 was fast for me, cos I wanted to finish the race as fast as I can and go to zzz. Was running when I found a toilet at the golf course's shed.. lucky.. But anyways, the run was fast and the heat was furious... the aids station was superbly helpful here. Right before the end, stopped at Teryn's station and asked for room key.. She called me siao and asked me to fin the race first... hey.. I just wanted a shower.. ok ran to the finishing and finished the race. yayy!!!
(courtesy of Ben Swee)

Got my medal, my wet towel, my Tshirt, some congratulations.. and I was done.. Rehydrated, showered and slacked in the room after that.. haha.... OK, Dinner was at the town, Chinese food.. yummers... mmm...

The next day was the sprint event, and I was there to cheer for everyone.. Apparently, some of the prev day's athlete's were in for the sprint as well.... oooo... POWER!!! 

POWER!! Ben did both long and sprint distance.. again.. POWER (well.. it's his own photo.. :))

The lady who had the wheelchair... 

 The Desaru triathlon was finally over... Stayed till the prize giving lunch before heading back to the jetty by the organiser's bus/truck again...Time to leave this magnificent place.. :( but this was one of the best races I've ever been to.. The organisers were great, the race was just right and best of all, the company was just more than I could've ever bargain for... so.. next year onz??... hehe.. I might just be the person handing out the drinks.. hehe...

Trudge on... (Chris behind me, BTWs)

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