Monday, September 25, 2006

Trekking in Ladakh, India

Finally, I have completed processing and uploading all the four photo albums from Wendy Tan. I have also updated the Pacesetters Club Web site with a different presentation. Please take a look ... please click here and scroll down the correct photo album.
Photos are by courtesy of Chan Wing Kai
Photos are by courtesy of Wendy Tan:

Please click here (while pressing Shift key to open a new window) to view Album 1 containing 206 great photos.

Please click here (while pressing Shift key to open a new window) to view Album 2 containing 207 great photos.

Please click here
to view Album 3 containing 175 great photos.
Please click here to view Album 4 containing 212 great photos.

There was lots of Wow! and Wah! from me when I first saw these photos. The photos viewing session was organized by Wendy Tan, one of the five trekkers for that trekking trip. They were other trekkers and Pacesetters runners in that photo viewing session, two weeks after the trekking trip. We went through each frame of the photos with projection on to a white wall.

With the big screen, the colours of the photos were stunning and the scenery looked spectacular. Each photo, painstakingly taken by Wendy, showed the world’s mightiest mountain ranges. The photos showed the wonderful views of colorful mountains and amazing landscape when they trekked everyday. The views on the landscape were simply beautiful, breathtaking, and spectacular.

As informed by Wendy, they have to trek between 15km to 20km daily. With high altitude and thin air conditions, trekking seemed to be a difficult task that can get tired easily. Her backpack, other than carrying water and jackets, she has to carry the camera lenses that add on to the weight.

Most of the time, the camp sites were situated at an altitude of about 4,200 meters above sea level and their trekking peak at about 4,800m. As a comparison, Genting Highlands is only situated at an altitude of 2,000 meters above sea level and Mount Kinabalu peaks at 4,100m, while Mount Everest towers at an imposing height of 8,850m.

BRAVO to the five brave runners-cum-trekkers were: Connie Tan, Sonny Ng, Jenny Leong, Chan Wing Kai & Wendy Tan. There were two photographers in that trip: Wendy Tan was using Canon 350D digital SLR camera, and Chan Wing Kai was using Nikon D70s digital SLR camera.

The total duration of that trekking trip was 14 days from 16 August to 30 Augut 2006. Wendy is going to organize another trekking trip next July. Are you interested to join after viewing all these great photos? If you are interested, send an email to me at kcle3 at Yes, let us plan for the next trekking trip.

My observation: due to the harsh weather condition, there are lots of wrinkles on the locals’ faces. Sun and harsh wind may wrinkle their faces but not their souls to live there with the basic amenities.

The next great trekking trip by Pacesetters Runners is starting 29 September 2006 for two weeks. They will be trekking in Nepal and the destination is the Mount Everest base camp. Stay tune for their photos.


Sunday, September 24, 2006

Eric and Vivian's Wedding

Please click here to view 109 photos taken by KC.

It was an evening of good company, good food and good fun at the Equatorial Hotel in Malaka.

There were quite a number of Pacesetters Runners invited in that wedding ceremony. One runner commented: “Instead of meeting in the runs, we now meet in the comfort of a hotel”.

I was pleasantly surprised to see Chan Wing Kai, Pacesetters Club photographer. As usual, both of us started taking photos together just like in other running events. The difference was that all participants are in their best dress. The girl runners looked stunningly beautiful in their evening gowns.

Congratulations and best wishes to Eric and Vivian! Yes, you need to step up the production capacity... :-))

Yeah, Tony got "gaya" ...x
The beautiful Chantelle and Maryann.
Vivian's sister and MAX.

The handsom IRONMAN, Lee, is surrounded by the pretty gals. He just did the Langkawi Ironman race this year (swim 4km, cycle 180km, follow by a full marathon same day).

Stay tune for hundreds of great photos taken by Wendy Tan in her recent trekking trip (with other Pacesetters Runners) to Ladakh, India.


Sunday, September 17, 2006

Mizuno Wave Run on 17 Sep 06

To view 263 photos taken by Jason Lee, please click here.

To view 251 photos taken by KC, please click here.

Photos by Chan Wing Kai, work is in progress.

I have updated Pacesetters Club web site. Please click here.


Thursday, September 14, 2006

Putrajaya Marathon - More Stories

Here are the extracts of the stories from P1, P2, P3 and P5.

Congratulation to all the runners who pull through the hot Putrajaya Marathon. This event attracted almost full participation from the Penguin Runners: four in full marathon and three in half marathon.

It was a rude awakening for me. Next to the Milo drink station at the finishing line, I saw Maryann and Siok Bee (both gals) were sipping nice cold drink amid their conversation of the run. Though it was slightly hazy that morning, one thing was clear – that they came back earlier than me in the Putrajaya half marathon category. My timing was 2 hours 16 seconds. I thought I was running fairly fast but in actual fact, I slipped another 5 minutes from my usual timing of 1:55. And that timing was another slip from my earlier record of 1:50.

Here are my excuses: I have not been doing 20km long run for a long time. For the past two months, I have been focusing on 5km short distance speed work preparing for The EDGE Rat Race. Yeah, another excuse was too much venturing into taking photographs on running events instead of running in the event. This was also highlighted by a few of the runners whom I met before the start of the Putrajaya Marathon on Sunday, 10 Sep 2006.

I must be running quite slowly that I identified a lady of almost my running speed to be my pacemaker in the second half of the course. After a few times of overtaking her (I slowed down to enjoy the cold isotonic drinks at all the drink stations along the course), while running abreast, I complimented her that "you are very fast". Instead, I was given a cold and blank stare. It was at the finishing line, one runner told me that she is a mat salleh (but look like a Chinese). Nevertheless, she was a good pacemaker for me to stay focus in the run and at times, ran at faster pace.

By KC, P1

By Meng, P2

Congratulations to all the Penguin Comrades!

You have survived in one of the most challenging hot marathon available in Malaysia.

Enjoy the pain and suffering that you are having now as money cannot buy it. At the same time, recall and savour the "near dying" feeling towards the completion of the last few km of the run. Again, money cannot buy that kind of feeling as you have to do it yourself to experience it. I personally believe that the same feeling will lead us to appreciate our life more and live through it to the fullest.

Keep it up!!

By Tony, P3

Well done on the completing the marathon. Sure it was a hot day. KC and I was running in the half marathon. We chat most of the time but by the 11km mark, KC start to run faster, probably he saw 'leng lui'. As for me I was just about 5o metres behind from him till 18km where I encountered cramps at my calf and hamstring was tight. I have no choice but to run in tortoise pace till the finishing line.

In my years of running, only the race officials told the runners to stop running. Guess what happen at the Putrajaya 7km fun run: An 11-year old girl wanted to accompany her brother for the 7km fun run. However, she was stopped by a policeman telling her that she cannot run because she has no bib number.

The poor girl was frightened and started crying and the policeman just smile. She ran back to the car and her brother has to accompany her till her father finished the half marathon. Fortunately, she was not issued with any summons.

By Steven, P5

The Putrajaya Marathon was my weekend long run training camp. I ran unregistered and of course like the little girl in Tony's story, I ran without bib numbers. I came for training and not for the medal. Along the course, I paced with Rustam for the first 21km and with Weng for the second half of the journey.

The full marathon run at Putrajaya was to test my endurance on long run since my last marathon in Feb/Mar 2005. All systems went well up to 30km ... maybe I was stopping too long at 30km mark waiting for two other runners, my body was already cooled down to finish the rest to the distance. While waiting, I enjoyed eating watermelon, drinking nice icy cold 100 Plus. I also have the opportunity to help a turtle crossing the road to the other side of the highway, and shared my half bottle of mineral water with her.

It was a great long run but I will have to seriously consider taking a full marathon challenge in Putrajaya as it is hot and without any shade.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

A Hot Putrajaya Marathon

Below are the extracts of P12, P11 and P10's writing:

By Jason Chin, Penguin-12
(After the full marathon race) I just have to sleep off all those sore legs, strain muscles and lastly the sun burn. I have to turn on my room air-conditioning at 16C with fan on, yet I felt the heat...what a bummer!

Overall, Putrajaya marathon was a lonely race for me. Along the way, I could only spot less than five runners at any one time after the 20km mark.

My run started with lots of mix plan. I knew it's going to be a really hot run (somewhat like Singapore) and from the crowd at the starting line, I have foreseen a Melacca '05 type of enthusiasm (where I ran alone for the last 15 km with me and my shadow). But I was happy to see a bunch of crazy FOOL Marathoners starting at the grid chatting without even realizing the starting GUN went off.

I pushed really hard from 10km to 30km as I wanted to get the most out the few down hills. After 30km mark onwards, it was a torture with mainly uphill terrain. Other than the boring straight road, I have to endure the blazing sun shining towards my face.

My last 10km took almost 90 minutes. Overall, I finish the race with strained muscle, sore toes, and sun-burned shoulders but with a happy face for achieving my targeted time of less than 4 hrs 30mins.

By Chee Wee, P11
It was amazing thing that I completed this so called "hot mara". Seriously, I nearly wanted to give up at 32km mark. But, I told myself to stay focus on the course; the sun was blazing on my head & it was so hard to put my head up & look up the bloodily far straight road. My mental was very weak as it kept giving the signal that I wouldn't make it to the finishing line.

I was glad that I brought along the cap for the first time as it allowed me to cover up my head & face. Since I could hardly look up due to the blazing sun, I was running for nearly a distance of 5-6km with the head down; until my mind & neck were feeling stillness. It was a good way to stay focus; as long as I couldn't feel any tiredness from my legs & neck; I could keep on going...

Sadly that after 38km mark, I have to walk & run (baby step) towards the finishing line. I felt very sad that when I stopped & walked, I could feel that my exhausted legs were very heavy & they were in pain. I got a serious & severe pull at my left leg's hamstring at the 40km mark. I thought it would be the end as I couldn't even make a small step forwards; my heart was sunk & my tears were nearly leaking down from my eyes; but, I told myself that it is NOTHING compared to those are still suffering under the hot sun at the back & unfortunate one. Furthermore, there is only another two more KMs especially I knew that the finishing area is nearby. So near but yet so far; towards the end, I am happy that I made it & thank you KC, Francis, Jason & others who were there to cheer for me. Million thanks!

Overall, this race has given me a good experience & opportunity to test my body to the certain limit & endurance. I expected that I would be very exhausting after the run as it has to do with me being lack of trainings; the lesson to be learnt.

At night, my whole body was burning hot due to the severe sun burn & aching lower & upper body. But, fortunately, I got a good sleep; that's why I feel very fresh now despite the sore legs & bury sensational shoulders. Glad thing that everyone in the office that saying that I have a great tan. Hahaha!

I concluded this run as "being a fool running a "fool" hot marathon without putting a decent training; therefore, encountering pains & sufferings". Well, no regret at all to take part in this event; I will come back for it next year (if there is).

Chee Wee

Hi Running Buddies,

Wow, Chee Wee, that's the way! Congratulation!

You made it to stand at the starting line, with your fighthing spirit to overcome the hot & boring & hilly road & at last, you STAND TALL among the MARATHON FINISHER!!!!

Let's forget about the bitter experience & look forward for a well prepared road running race!

Take good rest & well protein to have a quick muscle recovery!

Same to you Jason, Congratulation on another Marathon title in your hand!

Also to our season Marathon runner Khee Meng, Weng; and the Half Marathoner KC, Tony, Steven, Francis … Congratulation!

Eric Teo, P10

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Rat Race 2006 Report

Please scroll down the posting to view photos of The EDGE-Bursa Malaysia Rat Race 2006.

Putrajaya International Marathon - 10 Sep 2006:
Please click here to view 319 great photos taken by Jason Lee.

Please click here to view 99 photos taken by WENG.

My heart was pounding hard, so were my feet on the tarmac. My shirt was completely drenched with sweat despite the mild weather after an afternoon drizzle. “Come on! Maintain the steady form. Hold on to the big stride. You can do it!” I kept reminding myself when weaving my right hand holding the cap bearing RHB logo.

On seeing the cap, the group of cheering team members from RHB Group stationed in front of the T-junction of AmBank building (Jalan Raja Chulan) immediately ROARED. With a smile creased on my face, I engaged the attention of my fellow colleagues and instantly, I connected with them. The cheers gave a renewed boaster power to me for the final 500 meters run to the finishing line.

There were only three runners in front of me maintained at about 10 meters in intervals. I was not able to overtake them, as I believed every runner was pushing their maximum power to pull through. Finally, the uphill ramp and the spectators were within sight; I could hear the cheers.

With full throttle ahead, I tackled the ramp and with a left turn, the finishing line was right in front of me. Yes, I made it. When I received the positioning tag, I was pleased to see that my position was good though I slipped another six positions away compared to 2005. Knowing that I was the slowest runner in my pack, I was quite certain that we would regain the Championship title again.

About this Event

This is a charity race that mirrors the Rat Race originally started in New York. According to the Sun newspaper published on the event day, 5 September, the response was good: 110 teams (550 executives) and 39 CEOs would be running in this race. And the collection of money in aid for 12 charitable organization soared to one million Ringgit. RHB Group was fielding 12 teams again – the biggest contingent for another year. RHB Group also sent in the most number of cheering teams along the course.

In 2005, it was indeed my privilege to represent RHB Bank in competing with another 100 teams and emerged as the Champion Team. This time, I went there with a mission – to defend the 2005 Championship title.

The rule of the game: One team consists of five runners who don office attire to run a distance of 4.5km each. Positions of all five runners are added as points; winning team is the one having the minimum total points.

At the Starting Venue

As usual, the runners and spectators in this event were treated to a display of pomp and splendour. The road in front of Bursa Malaysia Building was alive with fanfare. The cheer-leaders were carrying colourful pom-poms; pretty girls dressed in attractive outfits and vibrant colours that resemble their corporate colours. With the lively music, each team would perform a little synchronized movement that were pleasing to watch.

Whenever I heard the screams of the ladies cheerleading team members, it really charged me up just like the horse wanted to unleash the power – to run. Since it was not the time to start the race, I did a warm-up run at the car park just next to the starting area.

There were quite a number of Pacesetters runners present in this event. Those that I met: Bassin from Telekom; Nancy Lai and Mr. Chan from HSBC Bank; Miss Lesley Tan from IBM; Jessica from Ernst & Young; May Ching from Accenture; KK from KNN and Christine, etc.

Looks like this race is getting popular: more teams were participating with an increased in collection of charitable money. From a photographer stand-point, Jason Lee also recognized more cameramen and photographers were keenly competing for pole positions to take photos. The other two photographers from Pacessetters Club were Chan Wing Kai and WENG.

With an accumulation of storm clouds, the sky could not control itself and started drizzling at around 4:00 p.m. The rain did not deter those that were there and I could see actions were still going on. The rain was welcomed by most runners as it was cooler to run.

The 1km race for the CEO start as planned – 5:00 p.m. sharp. Immediately, the runners for the Executive race, who were positioned behind them, moved forward a few feet to the starting line. And at that moment, many other runners who were standing by the side just lined themselves in front of the starting line defying the basic protocol and manners – similar to jumping queue in traffic jam. I could see that the fast runners were worried as the slow runners were then blocking their way.

The last minute announcement by a FTAAA official was causing anxiety among the fast runners. He informed the runners that there was a car accident along the course resulted in diversion of route. First, we could not hear well what was said and secondly, we could not comprehend the direction: Turn left at this junction; turn right there… With the announcement, it really worried me that what if the runners ran in the wrong direction.

Nevertheless, with all those uncertainties, the event started when the last CEOs returned. Luckily, no runners were pushed and fell down that lead to untoward accident.

While most teams dressed in their office attires, there were many teams that ran with props that showed products marketed by their company. For example, GE (General Electric) company’s team of runners were dressed in locomotive.

This is the only race in the entire Malaysia where most cheerleading teams congregated along the course. Added on to the fun was to hear the cheers and feel the sensation of screams when running passed them that would sure super-charge any runner.

It was most comforting when I see so many supporters that I know lining the course calling my name: Chee Wee (P11), Jason Chin (P12), Lisa Onn, Lawrence and Penny who was blowing a whistle. Jason Chin managed to take photos of me too.

I was trailing about 20 feet behind Mr. Chan of HSBC Bank and I could not overtake him. At the finishing line, he said that with the roar of RHB cheering teams, he could precisely identify my distance behind him without having to look back.

Dinner and Awards Presentation

All sponsors, volunteers and runners were treated to a sumptuous buffet dinner at 7:00 p.m. While dining, it was most meaningful to revive the memorable memories by watching the video on the happenings and running actions at the four big screens.

I was most excited that when the announcer announced that the second runner-up team went to Tony and Steven’s team. The first runner-up team went to MAS – new team on the block. And finally, the announcement for the champion team: Team 4 of RHB Bank – the name of my team.

The feeling of walking to the podium was electrifying. Standing at the podium facing the audience with flashes from cameras, I was in jubilation and spirit having flown. It really felt good to stand up there. It was worth all the effort for spending more than a month of focused speed training on my own to aim for that moment.

Unlike last year, where the prize was just ordinary; however, the prize was fantastic this time. It was like the icing on the cake: I have the Nike MaxAir running shoes with iPod. There is a remote control device that can be inserted into the shoes for transmitting data back to the iPod – what a cool gadget.

Tony said, “Just look at KC... Smiling all the way.” Another running friend commented: "On the podium, you are so happy.”

Another person that should be happy and proud is Tony. With his strategy, two teams of runners from RHB Bank managed to distribute the points perfectly in order to push two teams up the podium.

The result means that the reigning champion team from RHB Bank has extended its lead in this year’s championship again for the second time. That evening, it was a proud moment for the Penguin Runners – KC (P1), Tony (P3) and Steven (P5). As for me – mission accomplished. See you all again in this fun-filled event next year.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The EDGE-Bursa Malaysia Rat Race 2006

Please click here to view 234 photos jointly taken by WENG and KC.

Please click here to view 121 photos taken by Jason Lee.

Special thanks to Jason Lee and WENG for your help.

This is the proud moment for Penguin Runners as KC (P1), Tony (P3) and Steven (P5) were honoured to be standing at the podium.


Monday, September 04, 2006

Genting Trailblazer Challenge

Please click here to view 567 photos taken by KC. Take your time to view them and enjoy the fun too.

Please click here to view 165 photos taken by WENG while running in the race.

Please click here to view 139 great photos taken by Chan Wing Kai.

Work is in progress to process photos taken by CS Wong.

Pacesetters Club Web site has been updated.

Tuesday 5 September 2006: The EDGE Executive Rat Race. More photos will be taken by Jason Lee and Weng. Yours truly will be the runner this time. Come and join in the fun. The run will starting at Bursa Malaysia (KLSC), Kuala Lumpur, 5:00 p.m.

A stylishly executed action: This racer is not doing stretching exercise on a plain. To admire the action, please tilt your head at 30 degrees to your right. To appreciate what a racer has to go through, tilt to 45 degrees.