The Standard Chartered KL Marathon (SCKLM) 2017 will be a highly competitive race this year, particularly in the Malaysian Men’s category, as the athletes compete for victory and a potential spot at SEA Games 2017, which will be held in Kuala Lumpur later this year.
“As the selection for the SEA Games is only finalised in July, these runners will be eager to push hard to try to earn selection,” said Rainer Biemans, Director of Dirigo Events and Project Director of SCKLM 2017.
Speculation has been going on about who will emerge as the winner and possibly snatch a spot at SEA Games 2017. Here are some of the candidates to look out for.
Defending Malaysian Men’s champion Muhaizar Mohamad has dominated the Malaysian Men’s category for the Full Marathon the last couple of years. Last year, Muhaizar Mohamad won the Full Marathon Malaysian Men category with a time of 2:39:24. He was able to achieve his personal best last year partly due to being coached for a short time by Mark Williams, the Official Running Coach that runs SCKLM’s Running Clinics. The Armed Forces personnel who largely trains on his own said,
I don’t have a personal coach so it’s going to be tough for me to post faster times. I realised how much a coach could help me when I trained under Mark Williams. The plan he devised is what helped me to achieve my fastest time so far at last year’s SCKLM. But as the SEA Games is on home soil this year, I will be going all out in SCKLM 2017 to hopefully beat my personal best and qualify for the Games.
Mohd Jironi Riduan
Last year, Jironi clinched the second place in SCKLM Malaysian Men’s category with a timing of 2:39:56, only 32 seconds behind Muhaizar. The school coach who is determined to beat his personal best at SCKLM 2017 said,
I know my timing is still below the qualifying mark but I am focused on delivering a better time at SCKLM 2017 and hopefully that puts me in contention for a SEA Games race slot.
Tan Huong Leong
Tan has been recording really fast times recently with a 2:35:24 at the Taipei Marathon in December and 2:28:19 in the recently concluded Tokyo Marathon, which is one of the fastest times recorded by a Malaysian for the full marathon. Tan’s current personal best is well within the qualifying mark of 2:35:04 for the SEA Games.
Currently working as an engineer in Taiwan, he has been training under professional Taiwanese distance running coach Lim Chen Ming for the last two years and the results are beginning to speak for themselves. His timing of 2:41:53 at the last Standard Chartered KL Marathon has been shaved by almost 13 minutes albeit in much more temperate conditions in Tokyo compared to Kuala Lumpur. It will certainly be interesting to see how fast he can go in the sweltering conditions of KL. Tan said,
I’m really looking forward to SKLM 2017. While I’m not setting any particular goals for this event, I still want to do my best for this run and hopefully my name is in the list for the SEA Games come July.
Sheela is the current national record holder of the Half Marathon Malaysian Women’s category. Sheela smashed her own previous national record at SCKLM 2016 and will be gunning to clinch a spot in the SEA Games through this year’s SCKLM. The Principal Assistant Director with the Ministry of Well-Being, Housing and Local Government started running from an early age and has participated in the SEA Games several times before. Sheela said,
I started running when I was five and the journey continues. What started as a means to be happy and to reduce stress has become something more serious now. Breaking the national record at SCKLM2016 was the proudest moment in my career so far and I hope I can finish just as strongly this year as that would put me in a good position for the SEA Games in August.
The Standard Chartered KL Marathon is a premier running event in Malaysia that draws thousands of local and international runners to the country. The 2017 edition of the race will once again see sponsorship from Title Sponsor Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia, along with Honda Malaysia, Brooks, Lucozade, Seiko and Pacific Regency.
Elite runners will be competing to earn a slice of the almost RM500,000 in total that is on offer at the Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2017, which include bonus prizes for record-breaking course times.
Who are you rooting for?