47:52 or 50:00 Minutes?

Critique on the 4th Bonifacio Global City Run (20 April 2008)

In the afternoon of Saturday, the day before the race, I had a chance to visit the Anta Store at the Bonifacio High Street Mall and look at their displays and products. I did not buy anything but I remember from one of the comments of Mark that he got the route map of the 10K run from the said store. I asked for the route map of the 4th Bonifacio Global City 10K Run and they gave me two copies. I stayed for awhile inside the store trying to figure out the route as depicted in the map.

Maybe I was confused or I really didn’t know how to read a map but it appeared to me that the route had to go first towards the back of SmartPrice & MC Home Depot and all the way to the International School first before taking the inner circle (32nd Avenue-road infront of MC Home Depot-road in between Serendra and Boni High Street) and finally finishing the race. But what happened during the actual race was that the runners had to run the inner circle first before proceeding to the International School-Market! Market!-and back to 5th Avenue and then later to the finish line. Please correct me if I am wrong.

So far, this is the best race I had attended since the start of this year—lots of water stations and bottled water; lots of road marshalls; lots of portalets; lots of loudspeakers around; no problem of parking spaces; lots of celebrities and runners. This is also the road race where I promised to wait and meet the visitors of this blog who wanted to see me in person.

 This race was the most orderly and most well-planned event so far. In the past, runners would complain that the route is short and inaccurate. For this race, my GF 305 registered 9.94 kms, which is almost accurate and I don’t have any complaints on that. What bothers me now is what I saw on the finish line. I thought there was a “carpet RFID transponder” laid at the Finish Line or it was a carpet to cover the wires of the Digital Clock hanging above the Finish Line. I really do not know what was that and I thought some of the runners might had been using “timing chip”. Anyway, I had to ask Mr Rudy Biscocho about this.

I just received an e-mail from Mr Rudy Biscocho with the results of the 5K & 10K 4th Global City Run and I am confused again why there is a big difference on the Digital Clock reading at the Finish Line and the printed results. On the Digital Clock, my time registered at 47:52 mins when I passed through the Finish Line while the printed results had a time of 50:00 mins. My GF 305 registered a time of 47:49 mins where I got delayed in pushing the start button by almost 3 seconds after the starting shot was fired. There must be a good explanation to this big discrepancy on the results of the race.

There are always three (3) goals to be attained by a runner whenever he/she joins a road race. First, is to be able to Finish the race. Second, is to be able to improve his PR best time. And third, to be able to win the race in his/her respective age category or classifcation. I’ve been consistently attaining the first two goals but having a faulty timing system is very frustrating to a “passionate” runner like me. I guess, the third goal is coming to a reality soon but I need to have more time to prepare and practice.  

Lastly, one thing that was good with this race was the publicity and press release. A story was written and published about the run in so short a time in one of the leading newspapers. The Bonifacio Development PR people had done a very outstanding job in promoting running to the public through this 4th rendition of the Bonifacio Global City Run. To Mr Rudy Biscocho, you did a very good job!

Overall Rating—98%  (It could had been perfect if not for the discrepancy in the time results).


9 thoughts on “47:52 or 50:00 Minutes?

  1. markfb

    We really need a timing chip system in place. Its really not that expensive. For those who want to discuss this, I have a friend (IT) who’s interested to work with race organizers. RFIDs are used in retail outlets and in supermarkets overseas. The price previously mentioned in other forums are just way too high IMHO.


  2. runningshield

    I came in 49.45 in my GF 205
    rudy B. phoned me the day after the race and he said there was a problem with the timing system. i think there file crashed or did not record accurately. thats the reaso for discrepancy. if i am not mistaken they had to phone several runners to ask there time so they can average it. for your info


  3. noelmiano

    same here. digital timer showed 52:24, but my official time was recorded as 53:41. anyways, it’s a new PR for me.

    see you at runnex run this sunday!


  4. miraclecello

    I think I was running near or beside Col. Miano (or somebody who looks like his picture here — with glasses, grey singlet?) for most of the last half of the race and there was an added time as well of more than a minute between my stopwatch and my official time. But Mr. Biscocho said I should be happy because not many people my age can do that pace, so that’s fine with me as well 🙂


  5. quicksilverrunner

    Hi King,

    I would complain too if that happened to me. In shorter races, seconds can mean a lot. You actually lost minutes!

    Not that timing chips are infallible. I just ran Big Sur and found that their timing chip (at least the one I was wearing) failed. So I got wall time, a nice 1 minute 10 seconds added to my actual time. True time accurately recorded by the 305 of course. I scanned the results, and a lot of runners did get wall time just like me. Oh well. SFM on the other hand got the timing chip thing down to a science.

    I hope the race organizers will do better next time. From your description, it sounds like a race everyone should run.



  6. kingofpots

    mark, it is about time that race organizers should raise the level of running here. we are still primitive as compared from our ASEAN neighbors.

    patrick, the timing technology that we have are still the same that we had in the 80s. i still depend on my GF 305 for my finish time & i am very positive that it has a very accurate time.

    noel, the race organizers admitted that they had some problem with their timimg device. stick to the readings on your digital wristwatch.

    cecil, i know, you are getting stronger and faster. i guess, you have some sort of a “secret practice” in the mountains! see you at Runnex!

    qs, i’ll stick with the readings on my GF 305. anyway, i was able to improve my time. congrats on your big sur marathon and nice pictures, too! hope to see you during your visit here.


  7. too bad i wasn’t able to join this race event. Based on experience, the official time will be seconds slower, or even like this one, a minute or two slower than your actual time. This is maybe because its hard to keep track the mix of all the runners reaching the finish line (5K and 10K), and so writing down the time is delayed.

    In my case, I normally trust the time of my own watch. I just wait for the race results to just compare my standing with other runners.


  8. kingofpots

    taki, the truth is that the race organizers are still using the 1980s technology where a person “pushes a button” as a runner crosses the finish line and that button is connected to a small “calculator-type” thing w/ a printer. what is being printed is the sequence of runners passing the finish line from #1 to the last runner with the time registered. as a runner passes the finish line & while walking along the chute, another guy would get that detachable strip from your race bib where there is a hole on it in its corner. the guy will place the strip on a stick (ala barbecue) and the strip at the bottom would be from the guy who finished the race first and the strip on the top would be from the last runner. somebody would now collate the printed sequence of runner with time and the strips where your race number is indicated. as compared with other races abroad, our technology is already “very primitive”. RFID (timing/racing chips) technology, which had been used by racing cars/Formula 1 for the past 20 years or so, is now being used by runners abroad for the past 10 years. as for now, better trust your own chrono digital wrist watch in our road races.


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