Today, at 6 30am, I woke up at Hearton Hotel. Eliz, Lim Thow Wee and I met before the race and we went to the start point at 7 15am. The weather was fine at first and then just before the start of the race, the temperature was going up instead of going down.
|Lim Thow Wee and I took a photo at the train station|
We reached the start area, and at a point, only the runners were allowed to report in the area. As such, Eliz and I went to the 600m of the start line to support Thow Wee, Desmond Soh, Kenneth Lai, Dr Benny Goh, Mabel and Jennifer Quek. We were only able to see Thow Wee as he passed us. The pace, according to him when he crossed us was about 3min 50sec.
|Inside the train discussing the strategy.|
At that point, Eliz and I found that the weather was becoming very hot. The sun started to blaze at us and we were looking for shade. When the weather went up to 25 degrees centigrade, instead of 15 degress centigrade or so that we were hoping for, we became worried of their safety and timing of their personal best time. I knew that for even one person to get a personal best time, it is going to be very difficult
|Eliz, Thow Wee and I took some shots|
We were doing our best to go to the 10km mark to support. However, we could not cross the road as the runners were running and the official told us that after the runners have passed the road will be opened. This took about 30min. We had to decide to go to the half-way mark of the Osaka Marathon.
|I was surprised to hear that Thow Wee did 2hr 51min in this hot sun|
Using the subway train, we arrived at the 20km mark. We saw Thow Wee passing us. He did a time of 1hr 22min at the 21km. We waited for some of the runners but we could not see.
|Jennifer Quek, the wonderwoman who made our day|
Seeing that time was running out and it will take about 40 to 50min to reach the finish point using the subway train, both Eliz and I decided to go the finish point. An official at the train station told us to go to one of the spot and we decided to go. It was the 41.6km mark.
|Thow Wee and I are gesture on Jennifer's feat on doing her personal best time|
We saw Thow Wee passing at that point at 2hr 49min plus and we cheered for him. Then, we saw Dr Benny Goh passing us. We were cheering for him. It was very hard for us to see the rest as the runners were coming in to the finish point in big bunch and it was very hard to identify them.
Eliz and I, decided to see Dr Benny Goh and Thow Wee at the finish point near the prize giving area. At the area, the organisers were giving out prizes for the top women runners. I believe that the men winners were given their prizes.
We met most of our runners there. Desmond Soh told me that he did a near 4hrs. Thow Wee told us that he did 2hr 51min plus.
We were at this point saddened by what the weather had done to our team runners' timing. We ourselves, as supporters were feeling sweaty throughout the race.
Over time, Jennifer Quek came over to meet us. I was asking about her finish time. Everyone in our group know that they had missed the personal best and season best. Only Jennifer was left. To our amazement it was found that Jennifer did a personal best time of 3hr 45min. It was indeed her personal best time. In Berlin Marathon 2013, she did 3hr 48min. This year, she ran the Paris Marathon 2014 and did a time of 3hr 53min, in April.
In this marathon, finally she did her personal best time and she made our day as the only one to do it in a race, where the sun was out all the way from the start till the end, bringing the temperature up at the same time. I took a photo with Jennifer before the group took a group picture with her as well to commemorate at least one success that we had.
We left the place around 2pm and reached our hotel. We rested and we are about to go for our dinner, post marathon dinner.
I will be putting up an interview of Lim Thow Wee on their race in the Osaka Marathon soon, please look up for it!