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Too Many Road Races

18 05 2010

1. Yes, there are too many road races on a Saturday and Sunday up to 4-5 running events for each day for this month of May. It is surprising that we have the most number of road races in a month which is considered as the hottest month of the year for us. On the other hand, this could be a sign that it is about time to declare the Month of May as the “Month For Running” or “Month For Runners” in the country. If any of the newly-elected Senators and/or Members of the House of the Representative would read this blog, at least, they have a proposal for a Bill that could be enacted into a Law. This will encourage more of our countrymen to be involved in an active healthy lifestyle through running. I hope the member of Congress who will propose this bill is also a runner!

2. Is it good or bad to have a lot of Running Events in one day or during the weekend? If there are Cash Prizes for the top runners, it will be good for the “visiting” Kenyans and to the local Elite Runners, to include my Elite Team Bald Runner! If there is none, it will be good for the competitive/average runners (to improve their PRs) and receive their “loot bags” and a “winner” to the corporate sponsors for their marketing exposures.

3. Too many road races means that there are also too many race directors & race event organizers around. It also means that almost all the corporate products are dipping their money to promote their products through the road races. I just wish that the Race Organizers will get a profit out of their running events even if they are competing with other road races being conducted on the same day. It is good to “spread” the economy, too.

4. If there are two or more road races in a weekend, what would be the most important factor to consider in selecting one? Is it the registration fee (lower or higher), the route, the reputation of the Race Organizer/Race Director, the singlet & the “loot bag” at the Finish Line, the brand or product being endorsed, or the popular personality who is endorsing the race and the product? Whatever your choice is, you are the one making the decision and above all, it’s your money!

5. There are more road races being conducted outside Metro Manila and I hope that there are more runners being developed and/or discovered as a result of these races. Aside from the MILO Elimination Runs in the Regions and key cities in the country, I hope more of the established companies/corporations would be able to sponsor local road races and fun runs. In addition, it is about time that the local government units should be in the forefront in encouraging their consituents to be involved in sports. Running would be the least expensive sports that they could plan & implement.

6. Last Sunday morning, I was at The Fort and I observed the Start & Finish of the Neutragena 15K/10K/5K/3K Road Races. I was an spectator of the event and I was surprised that there are only “few” runners (as compared with the previous races with 5-8 thousand runners!) It appears that there were less than 2,000 runners in the event based from the published results. This could be the effect of too many road races in one weekend where runners have a choice depending on the factors to be considered in a road race. On the other hand, this was the first time that I also observed the presence of “tall & muscular” security guys dressed in all black. “Bouncers” in a Road Race? What is their job description at the Start & Finish Line? If I may suggest, these “security guys” should be posted in key intersections along the route of the runners where they could “bully or intimidate” those undisciplined jeepney drivers/motorcycle riders and “angry-shouting & honking” taxi drivers! I wonder if they are “volunteers” or get paid by the Race Organizers/Sponsors?

7. With the new administration of government preparing to take over the reign of leadership for the whole nation, I’ve been reading a lot of news about the same personalities who brought our athletes in our past international sports competitions (2008 Beijing Olympics & 2009 Laos Southeast Asian Games) with dismal performance as the ones reportedly recommended to be leading again our government’s sports institutions. Politics & Sports will never mix in order to get the best from our athletes and win medals in International Sports Competitions.

8. Lastly, I am planning to tender my resignation as the PATAFA’s Chairman of the Road Race Committee. Nothing had been done to my recommendations on the conduct & protocol of road races to include the conduct of seminar among road race directors and organizers. I would rather concentrate my effort in promoting ultramarathon races through the Philippine Association of Ultrarunners (PAU) as the President & Founder by bringing more of the ultra races outside Metro Manila.

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14 responses

18 05 2010
markhernz

Happy Birthday again Sir!

Very well said! I see these road races as training opportunities and for my long runs where there are easily available hydration along the route (for a fee of course). Given that, one of my priorities is the price of the registration fee. As long as there are hydration stations along the way (sports drinks or water will do) and for a reasonable price, i’ll most likely join that (after I’ve fully recovered from a PAU event!)

As for the Ultras, I’m now officially hooked and looking forward to the next one this August! It’s not only the distance, but the fact that you bring these events to breathtaking places where we can also admire the view. Case in point, the 1st PAU run. I used to just read about the Mountain Range of Sierra Madre, now I got to run on it!

On sports and politics, I totally agree, which is why i do whatever I can to support our runners. 🙂

Thank you for the awesome runs, and see you this August!

19 05 2010
kingofpots

we’ll try our best to organize ultras in the provinces in the coming months! thanks!

18 05 2010
leaj23

I was also surprised with the dismal turnout at the Neutrogena Run – maybe because of the numerous simultaneous races, and even the expensive fees?

And I was also a bit irritated at those bouncers too. They were there to prevent runners from starting with the wrong corral or group. So, if 5k ang bib mo, you couldn’t mingle up front with the 10k group. You’re right – maybe those bouncers should have been positioned at the major intersections to intimidate those rude and impatient drivers.

Honestly, even though you saw me run with a bib that Sunday, I was only planning on doing an LSD with my wife that Sunday. But, saw Jonel and he was gracious enough to offer me spare bibs. If it weren’t for Jonel though, I wouldn’t have paid 500 to 650 pesos for that run! The race I ran (5K) amounted to 100php per KM?!? Too expensive and unreasonable, IMO (and I think this is the sentiment of most of the other veteran runners).

I choose races based on the fee, the route and the distance. And because of my PAU and BDM experiences, nainip ako at nabingi sa start ng Neutrogena Run, hehe. I cherish more the low-key start atmosphere of your BDM and PAU races – the races for the “purists and hardcore.”

You’re resigning? I believe you’re more effective as the PAU organizer and founder. Grassroots, ika nga. And I think you’re now acting as Tourism Secretary, bringing us locals to Sierra Madre, to Bataan and Pampanga, and soon to Pagudpud (a place I’ve longed to visit, but never have)? Thanks to you, I’m starting to explore our own country. Hehe.

See you around, Sir BR. I hope you had a blessed birthday.

19 05 2010
kingofpots

thanks, jael. it is nice to be the “boss” as you can do what is best for the runners!

18 05 2010
jhomastig

tama dami nga races in a week…ang hirap nga pumili xmpre as a student like me pumipili lang ako kung ano yung kaya…

pero mas natuwa ako sa no.8 kasi mas matutukan na ang mga ultraraces….
mas ok yun….ako mas gsto ko na naun yung mga ultra nung na experience ko ang 1st PAU hehe salamat po dun…kung malayo ang interval ng mga ultra run as a student makakaipon ako hehehehe

hope to join the 2nd PAU

19 05 2010
kingofpots

we’ll be happy if you join us in our ultra races outside metro manila. thanks

19 05 2010
Arthur

With all these many events popping up every weekend, I hope safety and well being of the runners is not being compromised.

Will this B’day take you to a new age division?

Good luck , more power to PAU and hope you have in mind Western Pangasinan as a possible venue(Lingayen to Hundred Islands or Bolinao will be a good one).

19 05 2010
runninglakay

@Arthur, maganda nga yata ang Lingayen to Bolinao (close to 80k?), or just Sual to Bolinao (65k?) Why dont we try this route, back to back on a weekend, and submit it to BR for his consideration….Bolinao would really be a great finish area…

19 05 2010
kingofpots

yes, i’ve been thinking of bolinao as the finish line, too!

19 05 2010
jinoe

I agree on #5. I really hope more runs will be conducted in other cities and provinces. It’s starting to pick up though. During the first half of the year, I have posted events at Takbo.ph for Cebu, Bacolod, Boracay, Pampanga, Baguio, Laguna, and Cavite. I hope to see more in the coming months.

Btw, Quennie sent you an email for the Project Donate a Shoe at Runfest. Hope you send us your positive reply. 😉

19 05 2010
kingofpots

yes, we have to expose more running events in the provinces. i hope the local government units will be of assistance to us. thanks

19 05 2010
sundaywarrior

Hi Sir I so agree with your points here, I myself have reached the point of just choosing races as the reg fee sometimes are incredibly high considering the number of sponsors. I saw one race last Sunday in Pasig (Ultra) sponsored by PCRC and observed a lot of runners whom we don’t normally see in regular runs probably because the registration fee is lower than the usual?

We’ll probably never see the Php200-300 races again as organizers are pricing themselves out so for us, LSD’s would be the best answer during Sundays. Thanks!

19 05 2010
jambalayamuzika

Well said, Sir Jovie. Looking forward to running in the provinces.

20 05 2010
i2runner

Sir Jovie, it is sad to hear that you’re planning to resign as PATAFA’s Chairman of the Road Race Committee. It’s really sad to hear these race organizers ignored your recommendations. I think this really sucks big time. Sounds like race organizers are just making business out of us runners, raising the costs of registrations, and yet failing to make quality races, even making races dangerous to traffic for some runners.

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