Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Running: Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon 2014 (Bangkok) #SCBKKMarathon2014


Had the opportunity to explore the old Bangkok city recently by signing up in Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon 2014 #SCBKKMarathon2014 on 16 November 2014.

This was my first official Thai race and seventh international race event after #JAKMAR2014.

Since the race venue was held in front of the Grand Palace, I decided to bunked at a hotel in Khao San, 1KM away from the flag off area 1 day earlier.


About #SCBKKMarathon
The Standard Chartered Bank supports marathon running in nine markets spanning four continents. The marathon characterise the values and attitude that Standard Chartered believes in, and lives by everyday - a 'can-do' attitude, a priority on strength of trust, will power, stamina, and determination to go the distance.

In Thailand, this is the 27th Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon. It is a world standard athletic event which is popular among Thais and foreign runners alike. Bangkok is known as the City of Angels, to whom the glittering roof of the Grand Palace is said to reach. The scenic course travels past many historical landmarks through cultural and ethnic communities. All race distances start and finish at Sanam Chai Road located in the front of The Royal Grand Palace. 

Race Pack Collection
The RPEC was held at the Royal Army Club. Had some issues on my registration ID but were handled fast and professionally by the volunteers. Somehow my registration ID was for 10K instead of 21K. The volunteer routed me to the Go Adventure Asia personnel which handed me a new 21K BIB with timing chip. I was a bit disappointed as I was looking forward for my own personalised BIB with my name and country flag like the other runners.


Race BIB
Race Pack Collection
Race Pack Collection
Race Pack Collection
In the race pack, runner will have their BIB, race guide leaflet, running tee, a muscle cream and (guess what) finisher medal. Totally kills the run spirit. However, 'real runners' will still complete the distance.

There were sponsors and partners booths in the area, promoting their merchandise and also upcoming races in Thailand. Was interested in the North Face Thailand race next January 2015. 

Race Day
Heading my way to the starting line 1 hour before flag off time at 4.00 am (local time). Did a little walk and slow jog towards the area with some other participants from Khao San.

Left my bag at the baggage area which was separated by run categories. A number with marker pen was written on my BIB by the volunteer for collection afterwards. There was an ice cold soft drink water station near to the starting line which I found refreshing.

Baggage Deposit
Pre-Race Water Station
There was more than 5000 participants running in the 21K category distance which include local Thai and oversea runners. Started my run from the middle of the race pack which took almost 2 - 3 minutes for me to cross the starting line.


Flag Off
Flag Off


The route was mainly flat with some elevation towards the highway. Weather was a bit warm and humid. Water stations and medical volunteers were available from KM3 onwards. In between KM4 and KM5, runners were required to make a U-turn on the highway, which made the a little bit of human-traffic. Ended up following most runners crossing over to the other side of the highway to get more running space. 


By KM8, I was already running towards the iconic Rama 8 bridge. Had to stop for a photo-op here. I noticed there was a mobile toilet in the area, which was a bus.

Rama 8 Bridge
Rama 8 Bridge
Mobile Toilet
Fruit Station
Fruit Station
Had the opportunity to meet some of the Bangkok Runners cheering team near to KM9. Love the support and energy from coming out from them. Bumped with Leon, a Malaysian runner at KM14 where I got to know from the Bangkok Marathon Facebook group. He was running for FM at this race.

Running Club
Running Club
Running Club
Along the race course, I saw some participants with their Thailand's running club vest such as Bangkok Runners. Saw a runner with a Pinoy Fitness (Philippines) running tee there too. I am familiar with this running group when I was running the Milo Manila Marathon last year.


Bangkok Runners Cheer Team
Local Participant Running FM for His Family (As per note on his back)
1K To Go Selfie
Finishing Line Area
Completed my Half-Marathon at 3:00 hours. A little bit of a queue during baggage collection, but was managed professionally by the volunteers. Went to the food tent for food collection where I got an apple, a soya milk drink and a swiss-roll bun. 


Baggage Collection Tent
Food Redemption Tent
Post-Race Snack Pack
Exhibition Area
There were priority tents for VIP's and Standard Chartered Bank's employees since SCB was the title sponsor of this event. Tables and tents were set-up by sponsors and partners around the area. Runners can register for future races in Thailand by some of the exhibitors too. 
Exhibition Area
Exhibition Area
Exhibition Area
Sponsor and Partner
Sponsor and Partner
Sponsor and Partner
Sponsor and Partner
Sponsor and Partner


Review
Medal design was very nice and unique. Running tee quality was fine, but would be better if it was a real 'New Balance' product.


Finisher Medal
Water-stations were fine, but hygiene-wise could be improved. It would be better if water-supply to be poured straight from the water bottle into the cups. However, extra points for having ice-supplies at the stations since the weather was really warm. Loved the fruit stations at some of the water stations. 

Distance markers were not very accurate along the race route compared with my Nike+ Running app. Also, I recommend the organisor to place more mobile toilets along the race route.

Good support from volunteers, cheering team, official and freelance photographers at the event. Still looking for my photos though. Wish that photos were uploaded onto a more user-friendly channel like Facebook instead of a forum thread.

Summary: A good race event by organisor and partners. Good running experience with friendly Thai runners.

Event Recommendation: ★★★☆ (3/5)


Standard Chartered Bangkok Marathon 2014 Completed!

4 comments:

  1. Hi, may I know what is the hotel name you stayed at Khao San? Recommended? Thanks

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    Replies
    1. Check out Lucky House at Khao San, very near but not along the night market road.

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  2. KISAH SUKSES
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