In a previous post, I wrote that I was looking forward to the PMI run as it will be my first time to run at UP. Well, my first race at UP will have to wait since I was assigned to be an official timer for the PMI Run that was held last Sunday :)
I was already at UP around 4am. Saw Thumbie and his group setting up the starting line near the belltower. A lot of runners were expected that day, mostly PMI students, so instead of racing, members of Team PMI were called upon to act as race marshalls. Mike and I were assigned to be the official timers of the 3K run. Knowing how some runners can become so anal about their times, it didn’t take too long for me to realize the seriousness of the task at hand. Popo instructed me on what buttons to press on the timer, while Mike agreed to take on the task of listing the race numbers as the runners come across the finish line. It may appear simple on the outside, but I was really worried about possible controversies that may arise should we foul up on our jobs. Of course, it didn’t help that being assigned to the 3K run means having the most runners on our watch.
The race started promptly at 6am. 10k runners were sent out first, followed by the 5k runners and 3k runners at 5 minute intervals. After about 11 minutes, I could already see the first 3k runner coming towards the finish line. Wow, that’s a less than 4min/km pace!!! For the 3K run, awards will be given to the top 5 male and female finishers. So, Mike and I just had to make sure those top 5 winners are in order. The first 5 finishers were male and it was a good thing there were no ‘photo finishes’ nor were there runners bunched up in groups as they crossed the finish line. The top 5 female finishers soon followed and the pressure on us timers pretty much tapered off after that🙂 Whew…. It was a blast seeing the elite runners come across the finish line. For instance, Buenavista did a 30min something pace for his 10k run!!! The skies were overcast and it was the perfect weather for setting personal bests🙂 I’m sure a lot of runners were able to establish personal records during the run. Big Cheers to all of you🙂
Now, just a few not-so-good observations through the eyes of a race official, naks:
- After the run, there were some controversies surrounding the age-group winners of our more “senior” runners. Apparently, some runners lied about their age. Some were even overheard to have suggested to just divide the prize amongst themselves. Tsk, tsk, tsk. I was told this always happens in almost all of the races around the Metro😦
- Some runners also had the gall to steal boxes of Powerade drinks after the race :(
At any rate, I think it was good race all around🙂 No frills, free siopao🙂 Was able to talk a bit with Coach Rio who was all excited about the plans/races he has in store for all of us till the end of the year and early next year. I’m particularly excited about the UNICEF run he mentioned, but I’d rather Coach Rio be the one to tell you the details in his blog🙂 I’m just glad there’s someone like him doing all he can to make running accessible and fun for all🙂 Till the next race then….whether as a participant or a marshall.