Even if you’ve run plenty of relay races in the past, you won’t want to miss the upcoming “The Great Relay” (TGR) because the inaugural Singapore event looks like it’s going to be the race of a lifetime! This event comes on the heels of a similar Hong Kong TGR held in January 2015, so if you happen to read about it, you know a little about the one scheduled for Singapore on 13 June 2015. If you’re team-minded and love a good baton pass, get in on the action—after all, there are medals to be won and you’re likely to discover something heroic about yourself by putting yourself out there, whether this is your very first relay race or your 100th!
The TGR will be held at a soon to be revealed place, so keep up with every aspect of this upcoming event by visiting the official website frequently over the upcoming days so you can learn the location early enough to go there and check it out for yourself. Happily, the distance is no mystery: teams can choose between committing to a 50km or 100km distance that covers a trail loop. As is common in relay races, every team member’s individual time is added to team members’ totals, so in the end, that collective number will do everyone on your team proud. Speaking of proud, a charitable organisation is also going to benefit from this event, so if you care about causes, this gives you another reason to sign up.
When recruiting a team to run a marathon, it’s always good to ask more people than you need to establish your own 2-, 4- or 6-person team for the Singapore TGR. Why? Because people are people; some may already have plans that day and others could say yes and then bail out for myriad reasons just before the race. Ask anyone you please to be on your team (give it a fun name if you like), just as long as 2, 4 or 6 registrants make the filing deadline to get your team on the map. But, perhaps you’re saying, “What if I can’t get enough people to make a team?” or “What if some say they will compete but don’t show?” No sweat. Contact the TGR organiser, explain your dilemma and they will do everything they can to find single runners looking to hook up. Think of this as matchmaking for relay runners!
The Movers and Shakers
No relay race could get off the ground without organisers and sponsors. TGR Singapore is no exception, and media sponsor RunSociety is proud to share this event with its readers. As for the brains behind the batons, credit for both the Hong Kong and Singapore TGRs belongs to founders Vlad Ixel and Etienne Rodriguez. Vlad has represented Australia in so many running events and won so many medals that he’s become something of a legend throughout the Pacific Rim. Etienne is a passionate road runner whose marathon times and The North Face (TNF) titles two years running make him a force to be reckoned with in running circles, too.
Registration is on right now with early bird pricing, so act fast to get your team organised and registered. It’s easy. Go to the race website, open the registration page and create your personal account. If you already have one, log in under that name. A registration tab on the drop-down menu lets you select your race and category, and this is where you input team data. A word of caution: be sure you list each person on your team in the order in which they will run, since that sets your relay team lineup. Save your information and pay the fees. As the leader, you might want to collect money upfront from team members for two reasons: It’s easier to register and people are more likely to show if they’ve invested cash! Until that payment is received by TGR race organisers, you’re not officially registered, so no procrastination, please!
Every race on the planet has its own unique format and the Singapore TGR is no exception. If you’ve never done a relay before, read this carefully: You will be required to run a loop lap without dropping the baton and then quickly pass it along to the next person in line.
If this is your first time, you may even feel less pressure to perform because you won’t be completely responsible for the entire team’s final score! It’s customary to cheer on returning warriors as they pass the baton to the next runner. An electronic leaderboard tracks the progress of teams, so you’re not clueless about stats as you wait for your last runner to show up at the finish line.
Expect to have a great time at the TGR in addition to running your best relay race. Food and drink will be provided by organisers, but if you’re fastidious about your diet—or perhaps you prefer to stick to training and conditioning foods, or you need more to sustain you than the snacks organisers provide—bring a meal or healthy snacks with you. Don’t forget to throw both a head torch and a reflective vest into your gym bag in case things get dark and cloudy. As for the medal you expect to win—well, you’ve got room for one more, right?
After reading a little about what to expect when participating at the TGR event, we wonder if you have any personal thoughts on relay teams in general. Do you think it’s a bad idea for someone who is extremely competitive to participate in a relay if he or she could develop resentment toward a team member responsible for a loss? No judgments and no names—just send us your truthful answer. We’re all ears.