December is the month to be merry. While young children look forward to receiving Christmas presents, runners look forward to the Standard Chartered Marathon.
This year, the runners have more reason to cheer and look forward to the race. Beyond festive costumes, accessories, music performances and best dress competitions, there are also improvements to the running routes to enhance the race experience.
Volunteers and organisers will be decked in festive costumes and accessories, while the runners stand to win prizes in the best dressed festive themed competition. Festive music performances along the route will add cheer to the event and spur the runners on.
On top of these performances, runners can look out for giant Cheer Video screens at the 34km and 40km marks. These giant screens will display videos from supporters tagged to the dedicated runner. As the runners pass the points, the race tag triggers the screen to show the video messages for them.
Supporters can also board the Cheer Mobiles to get to Cheer Stations to catch runners along the route. Cheer Kits will be available at the stations for the supporters to use to cheer on the runners.
In July, the Singapore Sports Council (SSC) announced that it would reposition the running event to emulate world famous running events like the London, Berlin, and New York marathons, with each city offering a unique experience.
Mr Lim Teck Yin, Chief Executive Officer of the SSC and Chairman of the SCMS 2012 organising committee said,
The best marathons around the world are best remembered for their unique identities. London for its wacky fancy dress participants and charity element, New York for its ‘electrifying’ experience with over 100 bands performing along the route, and Berlin for its unique international flavour of participants from over 100 countries.
SCMS is the largest running event held during the festive season, hence making it logical to extend the cheer into the event. Mr Lim added,
We have close to 4,500 overseas runners this year, which we believe is an indicator of the name our marathon is making for itself around the world. With the festive theme, we hope the international stature of our marathon will grow even further.
Race conditions will see a big improvement through better route management and enhanced baggage deposit system.
The Full Marathon route omits South Bridge Road and takes an earlier turn at Upper Pickering Road, with a wider path for runners to prevent congestion. The breathtaking views of Gardens by the Bay (South) will lift the spirits of the runners at the 37km mark.
As for the Half-Marathon, the registration slots will be limited to 10,000. The route along Tanjong Beach roundabout has been removed to eliminate congestion. All categories will have improved wave starts to minimise crowding at the first few kilometres.
Runners can look forward to a smoother baggage deposit system this year. At the point of registration, runners who opt for the baggage deposit service will be presented with a baggage service pack (BSP) at the Race Entry Pack Collection, by the end November.
With the BSP, runners can pre-pack their belongings and fill up their personal details, thus reducing waiting times at the deposit counter on race day.
The SSC has been receptive to runners’ feedback and made improvements to the race. By examining all aspects of the race from start to finish, these significant changes to route and logistical arrangements will ensure a better running experience.
Every runner has been training hard for this race. Now, it seems like the organisers just made us eagerly anticipate race day even more!
The Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore 2012 will be a great way to usher in the festive season and end the year on a cheer.