28,000 merrily run for big money

Some 28,000 runners competed in the annual Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012.

The 4th Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 was a day to remember for 28,000 runners (5,000 more than last year) when they challenged themselves by putting their bodies to test at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur and several surrounding streets on Sunday, June 24.

Running in a marathon for at least once in his or her life is every runner’s aspiring challenge. It was heartening to see so many of them pushed themselves hard and finished the race with a big smile and a sense of accomplishment.

The annual running event has grown bigger and better since its inception in 2009 with only 13,500 runners. This year it has introduced three new running open categories such as MSIG Ekiden (21.1 km) and increased prize money to US112,330 which is the highest among all marathons in Malaysia.

Runners included elite professionals to first-time amateurs running in various categories from Full Marathon (42.195 km), Half Marathon 21.178 km), to other distances of 10 km, 5 km, 2.5 km (kids 10-12 years old) and 700 m (kids 6-9 years old).

The Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 attracts top runners from all over the world.

The first race, the Full Marathon Open, involving some 1,400 runners from 40 different countries,  including 118 Japanese runners as old as 87, was flag-off at 4.30am and the last race, the 700 m Kids Dash at about 9 am attracted scores of children aged from 6 to 9 years old trying to be their best.

Police sergeant Kennedy Kiproo Lilan, 25 and business woman Elizabeth Jeruiyot Chemweno, 32, both from Kenya won the marathon race in the best time of 2’14:45 and 2’40:24 respectively. Each received US$17,500 (RM55,888).

For the Full Marathon Malaysian category, police corporal Mohd Shaharuddin Hashim, 37, of Pulapol Kuala Lumpur and assistant/helper Ling Lee Eng, 42, from Sarawak won in 2’42:27 and 3’36:48 respectively. Each received US$2,500.

There was a carnival party atmosphere at Dataran Merdeka. Spectators cheered on the runners and performers provided entertainment while the children enjoyed their time at the Kids Zone.

A runner in fancy dress adds colour to the 5km Fun Run race.
It's no joke! This kid's overtaking an adult in the dash to cross the finish line.
A mother and child in the run.
Runners running and enjoying themselves.
A runner enjoys and smiles as she runs.
One wheel-chair bound runner did his first 10 km and proudly so.
Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012 winners: (From left) Ling Lee Eng, Mohd Shaharuddin Hashim, Kennedy Kiproo Lilan and Elizabeth Jeruiyot Chemweno.
Charity act: MSIG Insurance CEO Chua Seck Guan (right) presenting a mock cheque for RM15,000 to a National Autism Society of Malaysia representative. On the left is Rainer Biemans, director of Dirigo Events, the race organiser.
Congrats to these girls who did it marathon.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin greeting marathon runners at Dataran Merdeka.
Thousands jam-packed Dataran Merdeka area for the Standard Chartered KL Marathon 2012.
Participants are happy to run marathon for as many reasons as they have.
Runners get a full leg massage by massage therapists after their marathon run.
A pole fitness demonstration gets the crowd wanting to see more.
Children play car racing video games driving visual cars at the Kids Zone.
For the younger kids, a giant Inflatable slide keeps them busy.
These guys have the water guns to spray with just for fun.
All smiles: (L-R) Standard Chartered Bank managing director and CEO Osman Morad, DPM Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, Youth and Sports Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek and KL city mayor Tan Sri Ahmad Fuad Ismail.

The Standard Chartered KL Marathon is unique because runners are able to tour the city of Kuala Lumpur on foot while weaving through the streets of the city’s showcase of historical landmarks and tourist attractions.

Free race shuttle service to Dataran Merdeka was provided at 15-minute intervals from 2.30 am to 5.30 am at pick-up points such as in Bandar Tasik LRT, PWTC LRT, KL Sentral, Bukit Jalil LRT and Kelana Jaya LRT.