Sunday, 30 September 2012

3rd Full Moon Marathon Koh Phangan, race day

This was a race I looked forward to although the circumstances weren't ideal for me participating. My Mum in law is in hospital on Koh Samui and seriously ill so from hat point my participation was doubtful and secondly, I couldn't book a hotel online in Thong Sala, since during every Full Moon the hotels only take 3 night bookings and not single nights. I did go over to Koh Phangan though with the afternoon ferry and there were enough options available. I ended up in a very small and cheap room but it was all I needed for my purpose.

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

The start/finish area near the international pier in Thong Sala also served as registration point yesterday

My first surprise came when during registration I was told that the quarter marathon for which I signed up started at 4am and not at 5am! The event's brochure lists in Thai 4am and in English 5am! Good that I asked and found out.
Just for the record, the full marathon started at midnight!

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

If you're familiar on Koh Phangan, this is the route we ran for the quarter marathon

The route was nice to run and the lighting was actually fairly good although there were a few passages where it was pitch dark. As usual in races throughout Thailand, the actual distance you end up running is most of the times slightly more than advertised. Today the quarter marathon or 10.5km ended up being 12.3km.

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

Boy was I glad to see this sign at 5am!

My strategy was simple after last weeks disappointing (time wise) half marathon on Koh Samui; just start as hard as possible and see where the ships sinks! A strategy I felt comfortable with since I had some good runs mid week and a 10km distance is just good enough or long/short enough for me to get away with this strategy.

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

A bunch of marathon runners enjoying their prices

The race was not a massive event as in Phuket, Hat Yai or Samui which gives it a big 'cozy' factor! Even the two Kenyan runners I talked to and who travel around the region running races each weekend, told me they loved the atmosphere on the island.
The marathon had around 40 runners and the quarter marathon (the only two distances available) had around 60 runners.

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

The price ceremony, 2nd place in my age group

My strategy paid off and I ran the 12.3km in 50'18.9 minutes which earned a 2nd place in my age group! My first trophy since I started running 2 and a half years ago! I was very happy and I had a good time as well. Out of the 60 runners I think I finished between 15th and 20th spot.

3rd Full Moon marathon Koh Phangan

My trophy for 2nd place and the race medal

 All over I'm glad I could make it over, it was a good run for me and possibly this could be the last race this year for me. Looking forward to some more races next year!

Don't forget to use my Camille's Samui hotel recommendation blog and my Camille's Thailand hotel recommendation blog for all your hotel bookings on Koh Samui and around Thailand. By doing so, you will support my blog. Thanks folks!


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