Police Step In to Calm Runners After Lombok Marathon 2018 Ended in Chaos Over Medals
Runners were furious when they didn't receive finisher's medals after crossing the finish line at Lombok Marathon.
Held on Sunday, 28 January 2018, Lombok Marathon 2018 ended in chaos because the finisher's medals prepared by race organisers were only available for the first 500 finishers, but other runners insisted they are entitled to finisher's medals too.
According to Bisnis Indonesia, chaos arose when some runners who had finished the race didn't receive finisher's medals even though they didn't exceed the cut-off time. Blaming on the lack of explanation and clarification from the organiser, runners went on to the stage to protest in the yard of the Governor's Office of NTB (West Nusa Tenggara).
It was fortunate that the protest did not escalate further after police officers stepped in to calm the crowd.
"Honestly, we're disappointed with the organiser's incapability to organise such event. We have paid a huge amount of money for this. We have come from faraway places to this race, but all we get is a disappointment," said one of the runners.
Another runner from West Lombok, said, "In the announcement posted in Lombok Marathon's official website, all runners are entitled to race shirt, and all finishers are entitled to finisher's medals. But now, why only 500 finishers are entitled to the medals?"
To respond to this issue, Chairman of KONI NTB (National Sports Committee of Indonesia in West Nusa Tenggara), Andy Hadianto admitted that there was a delay of distributing the finisher's medal but it was not deliberate because the medals provided by organisers arrived late.
The medals were ordered from Singapore and there was a delay in transportation. Hence, the medals were not given out to finishers right after they crossed the finish line.
He said the number of medals is limited as the organiser only prepared 500 medals for finishers who cross the finish line. He explained, "Many local runners don't understand the rules. We have announced that only 500 finishers will receive the medals. But everyone wants the medals, so there aren't enough medals for everyone. Before the start of the race, it's already been announced. I was the one who announced it."
After this incident, Andy said that he and his team will evaluate whether the race will be organised again in 2019.