The number of runners interested in ultramarathon is growing and getting bigger. This was shown and observed during the Briefing and CLP last night for the participants of the “P2P” 65K Run in Ilocos Norte which will be held on Sunday, August 29, 2010. I saw the “usual suspects”, I mean, the BDM 102 veterans as well as those who finished the 1st PAU 50K Run which was held last May 9, 2010 in the Sierra Madre paved roads. I noted also that I was able to see new faces and new recruits of the BDM 102 veterans.
In my briefing presentation, I emphasized the objectives of these ultra runs being scheduled to be conducted on a monthly basis up to January 2011. Aside from our main objective of promoting ultra running events, we would like also to bring the runners to new running routes outside Metro Manila. Most of the runners I talked during the party also confirmed my observation that the running routes in Metro Manila are already “boring and easy” and that these routes are plainly used as training routes.
PAU is also geared to discover new talents and potentials in ultra running among the runners in the provinces. We are bringing the races to the regions and provinces. I guess, this is what they mean when our sports authorities say about “grassroot level” of sports development. Although this kind of arrangement will be more costly in terms of logistics and travel expenses, we hope we will be able to sustain this program with the help of our runner-sponsors.
Who says running and tourism do not mix? Well, that’s the beauty of running an ultramarathon distance because you have the chance to walk, stop, take some pictures of the places and scenery along the route, see different places in the country, develop closer friendship among runners, and a chance to bring the whole family and friends outside Metro Manila for a change of environment, for rest & relaxation, and other activities like tasting the local foods in the area. So, these series of runs outside Metro Manila will somehow promotes eco-tourism in the provinces.
Runners, I mean, ultrarunners have a craving for never-ending challenges in routes, distance and terrain. These runners want variety and want to push their endurance capabilities beyond their limits. It is hard to explain why these runners keep on wanting for more—more pain and more pain and more satisfaction on themselves as they cross the finish line. Most of the runners that finished their first BDM 102 uttered to me as they crossed the finish line that their experience in the race will be their “first and last”. But you will be surprised that the same people were the first ones who applied for the longer version which is the BDM 151 next year!
Lastly, PAU does not have any objective that will help improve the political, social, and economic situation of the country. Our Sports Federation will not duplicate the mission & objectives of the different departments and institutions of the government as well as to the goals of non-government organizations. We simply want to raise some funds for us to expose our best ultrarunners in international competitions. PAU had been officially invited by the Ultramarathon Sports Federation of Taiwan to participate in the famous Soochow University 24-Hour Endurance Run which will be held on the first Sunday of December 2010. Our best PAU runner will be among the 35 countries invited by the Race Organizer. With this international competition, our runner will be able to set our official national record on the 24-Hour Endurance Run. Hopefully, with these ultra races being organized and conducted by PAU, we would be able to raise some funds to realize our plan of exposing our runners in Asian Ultramarathon events which are sanctioned by the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU).
For those who have attended in last night’s Briefing and CLP and to the almost 140 participants of the P2P 65K Run this Sunday, I would like to extend my sincerest thanks and appreciation for your support on the objectives and plans of PAU.
Have a safe trip to Ilocos Norte and see you at the Starting Line. Good luck and have fun!