I have the folowing insights and observations on the conduct of the Milo Elimination Half-Marathon Race held in Laoag City last 21 September 2008:
1) Local Government and Sports Development—My impression during the race was that the local government was used as a “contact point” for the Milo Run Organizers to conduct such race in Laoag City. Local government officials were at the Start and Finish Line to Fire the Starting Gun and to present awards to the winners. In short, they were there for “exposure” and the “image” that they were promoting sports awareness to the people in Laoag City and Ilocos Norte. These local government officials were also late for the scheduled start time of the race.
2) Lack of Runners—I can not believe that there were only about 40 runners for the Half-Marathon Elimination Race. Out of the 40 runners, five of us came from Baguio City and Metro Manila; one female runner; at least 15-20 runners belong to the 40+ age group; and the rest were local runners. This is a sign that physical fitness or running is not well-exposed in Laoag City/Ilocos Norte. There is a need to develop more runners and promote physical fitness awareness for the province. In contrast with the lesser distance races during the Milo Run in Laoag City, 90% of the runners where children with ages 10-14 years old. About 200 children joined the other races to include some beginners among the adults. It seems that these children were obliged by the school authorities to join the race and be at the starting area at 5:00AM. Some of these children even came from the neighboring towns of Laoag City. Read the rest of this entry »