The Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (SCMS) is organised by the Singapore Sports Council (SSC), and is held on every first Sunday of December.
Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore Hot
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Could've been run better
I started running marathons years ago and Stanchart, being my first marathon, pretty much ruined my expectations. To be fair, I must have been expecting too much after reading up on the many marathon experiences around the world. I read about marathon comradeship, about long stretches of relative isolation before finding a fellow runner and an encouraging friend to keep pace with. That was not what I experienced. At all.
I can write a full article of gripes about my first marathon experience. In fact, I already did elsewhere. So I would rather not open another can of rants here. Suffice to say that the whole 42km was crowded and thick with walkers instead of runners. The loud speakers at the carnival, placed just beside the running route, reverberated the internal organs of luckless runners with its bass and the ending point was poorly placed around 2 bends, which faked us into delaying that final sprint that never came. At the end of it all, the toilets were insufficient and the area for bag retrieval was quite far from the ending point, forcing exhausted runners to limp back the way they've ran to get their bags.
However, there was a pleasant surprise in the form of encouraging words below every distance marking. For example, at the 21km mark, the words would read 'Halfway there!' while at 40km, the words says, 'Just a little more!' On other markings, there would be words like 'Keep it up!' and 'You can do it!'. Volunteers were also great and cheery, though by noon many of them were found hiding from the blazing sun. We were also given the option of printing our timings on the finisher tee, which was a nice touch.
Like many runners, I felt that the event was poorly organized for such a large crowd and given all the feedback, I thought that next year's event would improve significantly. I thought wrong. Apart from financial controversies with international runners, things did not go well on the running day itself. Our run started late because of a delay in the bag depository process. Along with all the shit from the previous year, we heard that volunteers were now passing out finisher tees to half marathon runners, resulting in a lack of shirts to the rightful full marathoners.
That was the last time I ran Stanchart.
A marathon that connects people
One of the biggest scale marathons in Singapore, the Standard Chartered marathon pioneered and rekindled the love for running in Singaporeans. The marathon, over the years has became a yearly occasion for people to come together, bond, keep fit and to finish 'something' together as one. Racing or not is secondary. Evolving into almost a national affair, the run sees more and more participants each year, having to keep a cap on its participants now.
I like to see how people feel honoured, proud and happy to be part of it and the numerous people around the island clad in the runners' singlet/tshirt tells me so. Finishers of the full marathon (24km) will be awarded a finishers' Tshirt which most would proudly changed into at the end of the race. I have friends who throughout the years, have set (and completed) ' To complete the SC full marathon' as one of their yearly goals. I salute them with my utmost respect for their determination and resilience.
I myself had joined the marathon twice completing 2 times 10km. Not an avid runner, I think the long walks around the designated circuit allowed me to see many places in Singapore from a different angle, which I would otherwise miss on usual days. The tags on runners' back shouting out their written goals is also something I had fun reading in the marathon. I look forward to entering the marathon with my friends again!