It is Visit Sepang 2020 and Visit Malaysia 2020, so I decided to play tourist at the Selangor Marathon! Sepang is where the international airports are and it is well-known as a logistic hub in Malaysia. Sepang is a district in the state of Selangor.
The Selangor Marathon 2020 is the first of its kind, organised by Comrades Team Ventures. Although new, the race is organised by a reputable and experienced organiser. If you want to have a good race experience, it is important to know the historical background of the organiser.
I signed up for the half marathon, 21km. I was specially interested to register longer distances because the start and end time are before dawn. Therefore, if you plan your pace and train well, you can finish the run and just in time for Fajr / Subuh prayers at the race site. Furthermore, it would be my first time running in Sepang.
The race was held by the fringe of the Sepang Circuit on the 22nd and 23rd of February. Just to be clear, no activity was done in the circuit area. There were a few categories : 42km, 21km, 10km, 5km and kids dash that brought together about six thousand runners who laced up and ran. The start time for 42km was at 1:30am, followed by 21km at 4:30am, 10km at 7am (flag off delayed though) and 5km at 730am.
Here are collective views from the half marathon runners :
- Race kit
👍 – Well-managed. Race kit collection was held at MAGIC, Cyberjaya on 21st and 22nd of February. It was simple and well organised.
- Baggage Drop
👍 – Well-managed within the race village
👍 – Ample along the route
- Medical & Paramedics
👌 I only saw the tent at the Race Village, not on the route. Probably it was just too dark or I was just too focused looking at the starry night.
- Road & route management
👍 Overall good. There wasn’t much elevation – pretty much flat. There were some dark area with no street lights. The good thing was that the roads were smooth and well surfaced. No potholes or uneven roads unlike the ones in the city. Runners MUST wear head lamp or/and blinkers when running in the dark. It should be a mandatory item and I feel organisers should remind runners to wear when the race is at night or early morning. Certain street lights may just fail on you on the race day and you don’t want to get injured. The runners were running in parallel with the plane at certain parts of the route. Now, I know how it feels running next to planes taking off and landing right next to you – SUPER SLOW.
- Water Station, Sponges and Muscle Spray
👍 – Well-prepared throughout the run. Coconut water was provided at some stations.
- Traffic Control
👍 I felt safe throughout the run. There were ample volunteers and traffic policemen at main junctions. There were not many traffic on the route as it was very early in the morning.
- Medal and Finisher Collection Area
👍 – Collection was superb, fast and well-managed. As I passed the last check point and the finish line, I received a medal and continued to queue for the shirt. Just named my size, and they gave me one. Design of the medal and finisher item was simple and I always like it simple!
👍 Unlimited food at the event village. Just pick as many nasi lemak, cendol, bananas, buns and water as you want. There is no limit. I find this super cool and relevant because each and everyone of us has a different appetite, calorie intake and running distance. So, take what fills you up.
👍 Since the start time for the full and half marathon was early, many manage to finish their runs and pray at the race village. A few late runners had to pray at the water station.
- Running Participation
👍 Healthy number of runners. These numbers are taken from results.checkpointspot.asia indicating those who ran, registration may be more.
- 42km : 916 runners
- 21km : 1,565 runners
- 10km : 742 runners
- 5km : 1,600 runners
- Kids Dash : 87
- International Participants
👌 Due to the COVID19 and travel restrictions, I didn’t see many foreigners. Just a few Indonesian runners at the half marathon. I was glad the organiser decided to proceed with the run as many were looking forward to it and the threat was not much in the month of February.
- Race Village
👍 Nice and friendly environment. Finishers would sit around, get foot massages, rest, eat their nasi lemak and catch up with friends until it got hotter. Every runners looked happy and cheerful refilling milo from the milo truck. There was ample finisher items and refreshments for everyone!
I enjoyed the run that day, mostly because of the beautiful starry night skies. The sky was so clear that I could see countless twinkling stars every time I look up. It was a cool morning as well.