Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Do the DU: IIUM Duathlon “Godzilla” Conquest

It was a fine evening when June suddenly asked us in our WhatsApp group about this particular duathlon relay. I replied stating I’m interested. No reply from other members. Few hours later, Khai contacted me about the relay. He had already pm’ed June and now he asked me if I’m still interested with that relay. I said yes! I created our WhatsApp group on 14th April 2015 and June proceeded with our registration. I put ‘Let’s DU it’ as our generic WhatsApp group name. We brainstormed ourselves and they agreed with my suggestion to use RJK, our initial name. From RJK, we expanded it to RaJuK, JaRak, RaJniKan (Sivaji The Boss!), Sivani Ummah and Redah Jangan Kalah. Creative right haahaha. June suggested RJK Avengers and we agreed. RJK Avengers is now ready to make a grand appearance in UIAM! 

Our poster!
This event, IIUM Duathlon Godzilla Conquest will be held in IIUM (UIAM) and only got 1 category, team of 3 relay. One woman participant is a must. The fee is RM90 per team which is quite reasonable. The disciplines consist of 5km road run, 10km offroad bike and 5km trail run. Prize for top3 teams only. Why Godzilla? I don’t know perhaps due to up and down elevation in UIA trail section that feels like riding on Godzilla back.

Event logo. Godzilla yeahhhh!
Event poster
Event tee 
Cycling route
Trail running route
They asked my analysis for the race and I said we have a chance. I cannot disclose the analysis details since it was private and confidential hihi. As for strategy, Khai will run the 1st 5k road, June will do the cyling and I’ll be the last trail runner. We trained ourselves like usual and a week before the race, Khai and I agreed to do trail run together. We contacted Abg Shah and he agreed to lead our run at Putrajaya Challenge Park (PCP). Khai and I followed Abg Shah’s steady pace but halfway through I felt too tired after series of up and down. Couldn’t keep up. Elevated heart rate. Jelly legs. Their steady pace was a torture to me. I slowed my run and fast-walked. Glad it was over after few km. I wasn’t a fast trail runner, never been one. That night I told June we need to do a slight change to the relay. I’ll run the 1st road run leg and Khai will be the last runner. Better. Cannot risk the whole team if I screw up at the trail run. Road run suits me well. They agreed.

PCP training: before and after
I picked up Tarmizi (Kodeng) and Khai and we went to UIA very early in the morning. We prayed Subuh at UIA mosque and went to the race site afterwards. Tarmizi was part of Nanei’s team and he contacted me a day before as he wanted to hitchhike to UIA. Khai and I met June there as she was assembling and testing her bike. We saw Merlin, her brother and their cyclist (Tongga). Competitor alert! After warming up, I went to the starting line. Other than Merlin, I saw this skinny guys wearing pink BSNPNM 2014 finisher tee and 2XU full tights. He seemed like a fast runner. Many women runners actually for the 1st road run leg.

Bergabung meletop ah!
Ready to DU this!
We were flagged off at 8am. I didn’t want to go all out like what I used to do back in my early running days. However, this pink shirt wearer ran fast. Real fast. I hastened my pace and trying to keep up with kimK. I wasn’t able to follow his pace and was left 200m behind. I tried hard to make this distance lesser and ready to overtake him anytime when his pace suffers. We were given a rubberband halfway. 3km had passed but he showed no sign of slowing. Dang! Our distance grew bigger at this hilly section. Double dang! The third runner (Kodeng) was quite far from me. I maintained my pace as catching up task was impossible.

Calm before the storm
Bang! Start your engine!
Roarrrrr!!!! Run!!!!!
I arrived at the finishing line few minutes later and passed my rubberband to June at the transition area. June sped off and trying to catch up with the 1st rider. We were few minutes behind the 1st group. Kodeng arrived few minutes behind me while Merlin was the 5th or 7th person.

1st runner!
Sampai sudah!

Selfie dulu!
While waiting for June, we chitchatted and took snapshots. 1st rider arrived but unluckily not June. 2nd rider arrived but still not June. Worried. June arrived as the 5th rider, almost same time with Merlin’s rider. Her bike and body was covered with mud. Weird. The gap between June and other rider was quite far when she took off. She passed the rubberband to Khai and Khai ran fast in order to catch up with other runners. June explained there was problem with the route and volunter. June and rider for pink tee runner were directed to ride inside UIA loop before heading to the trail section. She was shocked upon seeing many riders were in front of her at the trail section. It was learned that only June and Ayoee (rider for pink tee runners) were directed to UIA road loop while other riders were directed to the trail without doing the loop. Not fair! Yes, we complained to the race director. He listened and contacted his team through walkie talkie. He realized their mistake and willing to deduct June’s total biking time. It was a relief but then the wasted effort and energy possibly made June slower than what she could possibly do. We waited for Khai, chitchatted and selfie-ed with Merlin and Kodeng’s team.

The end of misery!

Amik rubberband!

Lari Khai lari!
Selfie lagik!
After almost half an hour, 1st trail runner arrived. Not Khai. 2nd runner arrived, not Khai. Even after 5th runner also not Khai. Worried sick. Top 3 spot was quite impossible and far-fetched at this moment even after deduction of June’s cycling time. Suddenly we saw Khai and joined him sprinting towards the finishing line. We were the 7th team to complete the relay. Our top 3 dream went down the drain. However, all hope was not lost. Khai complained he got lost with other runners as the mark was confusing. Khai took the long way before u-turning. Few runners ran the shorter path. We complained again to the race director. Let’s argue again. Argue part 2. Khai showed the map from the Garmin GPS watch. The RD again took note and discussed with their group. He then assured us they will deduct our time for trail run. Still got hope yeay! Star Wars A new hope!

Finish strong, together!
The result was out few moments later. We got 2nd place behind Merlin’s team. 3rd place was IIUM team. Yeay! Top 3 spot and podium at last. We waited for VIP and prize giving ceremony. We sang Negaraku and UIA song before the prize ceremony. All teams received their medal on the stage. We received cash in an envelope. Unluckily no mock cheque and trophy only for number 1 group. Ah well. We went home happy as our 1st collaboration resulted a superb winning.

Waiting for prize presentation
3rd place
Us, 2nd place
1st place
Loot of the day
Event tee
Nice rubberbands
It's was a (team category) winning streak for me since February this year. Started with Spartan (2nd place), proceeded with Saisoku (9th place) and finally RJK Avengers (2nd place). Beginner’s luck I guess. By the way, the man in pink shirt was Haziq and he became my teammate after this event. Interesting story right hihi. I’ll elaborate more in my next entry post. Thanks for reading ;)