Monday, 8 December 2014

The Otterbox Salomon Action Asia Trail Run Race Report - Roy Yeow

Remember this race late last month? Yeah, I reckon you all may (if you took part) especially the waist deep mud you have to swim through. Today, we have Roy helping you to relive the dirty moments.
The Otterbox Salomon Action Asia Trail Run Race Report

OtterBox Salomon Action Asia Malaysia on 30 Nov 2014 at Janda Baik was a new race that caught my attention when it was announced. This was simply because Janda Baik is such a beautiful place and it is full of hills.

Starting from Frenz United Football Academy, it was actually quite a nice place for a race. The field and the big hall allows for a great setup of event site, with a great view of the mountains and the cooling midst.
The view of the start gantry
Race started from the field, we turned left into tarred road and then left again into the main road in Janda Baik. About 1KM into the race, we were diverted into the trail. And that's where the fun begins. Although the race is only 18KM, it was not easy. The organizer has ensure that there are plenty of climbs, although mostly not as long as in ultra races, but it does challenge your fitness as runners up their intensity for shorter race. What more with the continuous rain before the event, this race became a real mud-fest.

The elevation chart by the organizer shows what is to be expected for this race, a lot of climbs and before you can take a breather, more climbs appear right in front of you. With the muddy terrain, there is a chance that for every few steps you take, you will slide down one step - taking more effort than you normally do to climb the same hill.

Elevation chart provided by organizer warned what is to be expected

That's it guys, one step at a time to go up this steeeeeepppppp hill
Here is the route of this race from my Garmin watch. The loop looks nice on 2D although if you are running it, the elevation just makes it 100x harder. From the map itself, you can see that there are actually two rivers crossing. With the rain days before, the water level was at knee level and current was strong, making it a bit tad dangerous for those that do not know how to swim. This is one area that I thought the organizer can improve on when it comes to the safety of the participants.
Runners enjoying the cooling water...
Route on Garmin Connect
Apart from dipping yourself in the river, the highlight of the race is definitely dipping oneself in mud (see below). There were horror story of one being stuck in there and no one around to help them, shoe getting lost inside the mud etc. Again, probably would be helpful if the organizer have some volunteers around to help those in trouble, especially since this race was promoted to elderly as well.
This is like a booby trap! One wrong step and you get to do mud facial!
After all the adventure, the race ended on the same field with not much fun-fare. Grab your medal, cert, water and clean yourself up. That's it, if you enjoy the race, see you next year. If adventure is not your game, then avoid this race and stick with road running!
Self service water station - help yourself to the juices!!! 
Beautiful route, if you do not mind the hills
The name of game for trail running - get dirty!
Natural obstacle.... runners helping each other out.
Team 2ndskin - Deo and Roy before the race starts - still fresh and clean. Lucky no photo of us after the race - dirty and smelly........

*Photos credited to Lim Soon Chung, Barkley Wong, Jimmy Aw Yang

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