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Team Futuro trio ‘run the talk’ for SportCares

3M Team FUTURO™ Challenge Launch Event

19 January 2018 – Marathoner Mok Ying Ren was joined by national athletes, also managed by ONEathlete, Shaheed Alam (Tennis) and Ren-ne Ong (Badminton) at the launch of the 3M Team FUTURO™ Challenge – organized in collaboration with SAFRA EnergyOne and ActiveSG in support of SportCares Foundation.

This was also the first appearance for the trio Team FUTURO™ Brand Ambassadors. Shaheed shared his excitement on his new role, “I am very much looking forward to this partnership with 3M futuro to give me that support as an athlete on and off the court. I believe with the support of Futuro, I will be able to continue pursuing my dreams without fear of injuries.”

Mok led the first wave of runners at the launch event this morning at SAFRA Toa Payoh’s EnergyOne Gym to complete a 5km run and raised, as part of the charity challenge, the first $10,000 for the SportCares Foundation. The initiative aims to reach out to members of the public to achieve a target collective distance of 2,000km and raise $30,000 worth of FUTURO™ products-in-kind to benefit underprivileged individuals and community groups.

The charity challenge also marked 3M FUTURO™ brand’s first national engagement to inspire the public to embrace the spirit of an active lifestyle. “It is one way we contribute to the community, in partnership with SAFRA EnergyOne and ActiveSG, as we help youths pursue their sports aspirations while empowering them to be respected members of society.” said Ms Claire Chiang, General Manager, 3M Consumer Business Group.

Speaking at the launch event, Mok alluded to the spirit of running for a social cause and relating it to his own experience. “Running for a cause is a great way to be involved and contribute to the larger sporting community. Be it busy professionals or parents for instance – we could try to do more with less, in our hectic lives. I try to commute by running to maximize the time for my training needs and residency programme. By running for a cause, this is a perfect way to multi-task and kill three birds with one stone! If you believe in contributing back to the sporting community, it’s an opportunity to ‘run the talk’. All while staying fit and healthy as an active individual!”

Ren-ne supported the call, “Giving back to the community through running is something everyone can do, be it athletes, the young or the elderly. Lace up and start running because nothing beats leading an active lifestyle and doing good!”

Mok also shared about the unbeknownst challenges for developing athletes such as national tennis player Shaheed Alam and shuttler Ren-ne Ong. He talked about how the innate qualities which define the human endeavour, as embodied in athletes, also demonstrates the strength that can uplift an entire community. Through collaborative platforms bringing together like-minded partners like 3M FUTURO, ActiveSG and SportCares, ONEathlete is excited and honoured to play a part in inspiring and empowering a community of givers to support social causes and build a more inclusive and caring society.

“Behind every successful athlete there is always a team of tireless, selfless supporters. Similarly, the strength of our community lies in each and everyone of us, to aspire and inspire, and also do our part and reach out to support one another.” – Mok Ying Ren

Members of the public are invited to participate in the challenge at four SAFRA EnergyOne gyms from January 20 to February 4, 2018. They can also log their distances through the ActiveSG mobile app from January 29 to February 4, 2018. The full list of locations and counting mechanics is available upon request.

Adapted from press release by Huntington. For media enquiries and images, please contact: Jed@ONEmanagement.sg

Ashley and Mok on ‘New Year, New Goals’

There is a fairly high chance that your alarm is set for 5:00am tomorrow – 10km run before work you tell yourself. No I do not have superhuman insights and ‘Big Brother’ is not watching you; we are just part of the 7 in 10 who stick to new year resolutions 9 days into 2018; but it is likely you won’t last and neither will I if the University of Pennsylvania study is right.

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So how about #ONEathlete national marathoners, Ashley Liew and Mok Ying Ren?

When asked about his goals for 2018, Ashley says:

I differentiate between targets (what you want to achieve) and goals (who you want to be)”. His targets are to “run a sub-2hr 30min marathon personal best and to qualify for a major Games event” and his goal is “to remember that life is not all about running and thus I should better appreciate the people around me like my father and girlfriend”.

Ashley, who was the first Singaporean to be awarded the Pierre de Coubertin World Fair Play Trophy in 2016, has both feet firmly grounded (pun intended) when he sees running as fulfilling a promise to himself while life is about fulfilment through his loved and cherished ones.

Similarly for Mok, who has spent more than half his life chasing down that finish tape and recently started his lifetime marathon of matrimonial bliss, goals are as much an end in itself, as a means to a (larger) end. He too echoed that special occasions are meant to be spent with special people in his life! He was relating to why he only did an easy run and opted to spend the festive days with his wife, family, and best friend instead.

Writing as a man who seeks clarity in life, and in true Mok-style brevity:

A generation without a vision will perish. Likewise a man without goals.”

Mok, who has a major exam coming up this year in his residency Programme, hopes to balance that and enjoy his running in 2018!

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From runONE and ONEathlete, we wish all readers and runners alike a blessed and meaningful 2018!

For more about setting new year resolutions and goals, (or if you’re deciding what time to set the alarm for) read on below or click here for article link.

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ONEathlete Co-Founder Jed Senthil: Behind The (sports) Curtain

“They have so much stress from life, work and family. The least we can do is support them. We are in the business of understanding them and you have to love them by serving and supporting them” – Jed Senthil, Co-Founder ONEathlete

Behind every successful man is a supportive wife, but what about aspiring or successful athletes? What does it take for an athlete to be successful – is winning races sufficient, or was it ever? How does ONEathlete help our family of athletes so that they can focus on doing what they do best?

ONEathlete co-founder Jed Senthil shares his philosophy on supporting athletes as a team of, not merely racing machines, but friends who understand each other as dedicated professionals, the weight of their passion as well as the expectations and struggles of everyday life. Check out some snippet shots of ONEathlete family in action, or click on the links below to read more:

‘A Growing Market for Sports Agents’ – The Straits Times Sunday Times, 7 January 2017

‘Change bulbs, 3am calls, book flights… all just part of the job’ – The Straits Times Sunday Times, 7 January 2017

ONEathlete Co-Founders: (Left) Jed Senthil and (Right) 2-time SEA Games Marathon Gold Medalist Mok Ying Ren

 

ONEathlete Co-Founders Jed Senthil (2nd from right) and Mok Ying Ren (1st from left) catching up with athletes, national tennis player Shaheed Alam (2nd from left) and national badminton player  Ong Ren Ne (1st from right) 

ONEathlete Ong Ren Ne (left) getting ready for a photoshoot with Jed Senthil (right) putting on the finishing touches
ONEathlete out in force to support Dr. Ashley Liew (right) and Evan Chee (left) who came in 2nd and 3rd Local Men respectively at the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 2017
ONEathlete family photo after the Straits Times Run 2017
ONEathlete in support of Community Chest Heartstrings Walk 2017 with Guest-of-Honour Mr. Tan Chuan Jin (centre), para-athlete Md Shariff Abdullah (1st from left), 15 year-old special needs Olympics 100m runner Shawn Goh (3rd from left) 
ONEathlete family at the inaugural Bangkok Midnight Marathon 2017 where Soh Hua Qun (1st from left) debuted at the marathon distance and Evan Chee (centre) finished as top Asian

National Marathoner Mok Begins ‘Lifetime Marathon’

Press Release

 

30 Dec 2017 – ONEathlete and National Marathoner Mok Ying Ren held his traditional wedding ceremony and michelin-starred luncheon banquet this afternoon, with his wife Belinda Ooi at the Regent Hotel. The Double SEA Games Gold Medallist struck another holistic gold. Family and their close friends were present on this joyous occasion to extend their blessings and well wishes, including school teachers, coaches, partner sponsors, as well as Belinda’s water polo teammates, friends from her alma mater and colleagues from the medical fraternity.

Being a national marathoner, Mok’s wedding theme was aptly set as the start of a ‘lifetime marathon’. Therefore, as a tribute to the brand partners’ unwavering support for Mok at each and every monumental milestone in his life, the gatecrashing ‘brothers’ were ceremoniously decked out in sponsors’ attires featuring ONE, New Balance, Oakley, Keypower Sports and 100 PLUS SG as they once again help Mok overcome the various ‘gate-crash’ hurdles to the dream of his life.

 

While the couple had initially preferred a cosy and quiet wedding ceremony, their minds were changed after seeing how many wanted to be present for their start of a new chapter in life. Mok and Bel also hoped this would be a fitting nod of grateful appreciation to those who have witnessed and helped them grow and mature throughout the years.

Mok and Belinda were clearly enjoying every moment together, mingling with the guests during the cocktail reception and sharing anecdotes over the years of friendship. The stage-shy Mok also overcame his fears and performed a magic trick said to have won him Belinda’s heart years ago.

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Above: Hosts Jed (left) and Adeline (centre), warming the crowd before Mok prepares to work his magic on Bel; Bottom: Mok is blindfolded during his magic trick

To prepare for the wedding dance, Mok and Bel devoted time to 10 dance classes from Auntie Rosa (whom Mok knew for her sports massage skilled hands) & her husband. The couple has started this dance sessions as soon as SEA Games ended, amidst moving to their new homes and other wedding preps. For the couple who have been together for 4 years since their junior college days, this day couldn’t have come faster and it’s easy to understand why seeing the chemistry they share as they took to the dance floor. Fun-loving and always full of smiles, the wedding’s vibe was an extension of their personalities – lively, easy-going and classy.

39909232_unknown-1Mok and Bel performing their couple dance at the wedding

Although an all-star crowd was in attendance given Mok’s background in triathlon, cross-country and marathon running, including overseas friends who have had to work around their holiday schedules to attend the ceremony, they all candidly remarked it was refreshing to see Mok outside of his doctor’s garbs or running attire, testimony to Mok’s dedication and commitment to all that he does.

Mok pulled off a surprise, a wedding vow that was sincere and straight from his heart.

The couple also took this opportunity to appreciate and thank every person whom had impacted their life, the wedding brothers/sisters who supported them in this journey, family and all the well-wishers who took vast efforts to express their love for this couple!

Reflecting on what has been a long year culminating in this momentous occasion, Mok feels very blessed to have his friends and family present on this special day, because ‘‘their advice, support, camaraderie and gift of friendship is what gives me the strength to continue when I thought I couldn’t; they have also seen me grow and mature through the years as an athlete, just as Belinda has, and I have them to thank for who I am today.’

Here at runONE & ONEathlete, we wish Mok and Belinda a blessed marriage and many years of joy in their lifetime marathon ahead.

Author and Photo Copyright © 2017 ONEathlete. All reproduction and representations rights reserved. For queries pls email jed@onemanagement.sg

Double Happiness for ONEathlete runners at Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 2017

Press Release for SCSM 2017

3 Dec 2017 – Pierre de Coubertin World Fair Play Trophy Winner Ashley Liew and fellow Flexifitness teammate Evan Chee (both managed by ONEathlete) finished as 2nd and 3rd Singaporean male respectively at the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon (SCSM) 2017 which also doubled up as the first Singapore National Championships marathon race.

1st runner-up Ashley Liew (right) and 2nd runner-up Evan Chee (left) together with their Team Flexifitness coach and reigning Singapore marathon national record holder M. Rameshon (centre)

1st runner-up Ashley Liew (right) and 2nd runner-up Evan Chee (left) together with their Team Flexifitness coach and reigning Singapore marathon national record holder M. Rameshon (centre).

In the Open category the Kenyans once again completed a podium sweep with Cosmas Kimutai winning the Men’s race in 2:22:48 while Pamela Rotich was crowned the women’s champion with a time of 2:38:31.

Reigning SEA Games marathon champion Soh Rui Yong was the first local Men to cross the line and was crowned Singapore’s first national champion finishing in 2:35:55. Rachel See won the accolade in the local Women’s race with a timing of 3:11:08 (unofficial).

Ashley Liew, the latest Singapore elite marathoner to join ONEathlete few weeks ago, finished with a timing of 2:50:21. While Evan Chee, wrapped up his 4th and final marathon race for 2017 (following Tokyo, Bangkok, Berlin) finishing in 2:54:38 on a humid but relatively cool and overcast December morning where the skies even looked threatening atone point during the race.

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Ashley and Evan on the podium with SCSM 2017 local Men champion, Rui Yong, at the SCSM 2017 Prize Presentation.

I had to balance high mileage run training with serving patients six days a week as a Doctor of Chiropractic at Family Health Chiropractic Clinic. In addition, it is never easy racing under the heat and humidity in Singapore. Overall, I’m thankful to my coach, Mr Rameshon, Flexifitness teammates, my encouraging girlfriend Sandra, my father who ran the 10km today, my supportive sponsor Asics and my management agency ONEathlete. I couldn’t have asked for more than to be taking part and racing among the very talented field today” – said Ashley Liew after completing his 28th Marathon today.

“Having raced 3 marathons earlier this year with the last being Berlin marathon just 9 weeks ago, my goals this morning had to be conservative and realistic much as I would have wanted to give it my all once the gun went off. Congratulations to Ashley who ran a superb race as well as all the runners who helped made this event a wonderful experience! It has been a fulfilling year of racing and travelling and I am looking forward to catching up with family and friends over this festive season” – Evan Chee

Also taking part in SCSM this morning were members of runONE & ONEathlete family. They enjoyed this year’s revised route, revelling in the running community’s camaraderie and taking turns to cheer fellow runners along the route.

While Mok had to give SCSM 2017 a miss due to his upcoming wedding banquet preparations. However, he turned up on race morning with a bright smile, this time as a supporter to give back the kind words and support he has received from the running community as well as family and friends all these years. Mok’s wife Belinda completed her 10km run while his sister, Mok Ying Rong, came in 2nd in the local Women’s marathon category.

Leading up to SCSM 2017, Mok also continued doing what he believed in, supporting fellow runners through his #RunwithMok 15-week training programme as part of a RunONE x Straits Times column which advocates getting active as a healthy lifestyle and also provides running tips such as injury prevention. Mok also provided hydration tips and strategies through his social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, having experienced first-hand the importance of hydration in the days before, and during, important races.

(left to right): Ashley and Evan with the RunONE & ONEathlete Co-founders; Mok with Belinda after her 10km race; Mok Ying Rong receiving her 1st runner-up prize

The 16th edition of Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon, which started in 1982 and has evolved into a marquee event for Singapore running, saw 48,000 enthusiastic participants in what is likely one of the biggest turnout in recent times. This year’s marathon also incorporated new ‘heritage’ routes and entertainment points, allowing runners to enjoy a historic cultural journey through Singapore as they race past Little India, iconic heritage sites such as Chinatown, Malay Heritage area and the city centre before ending at the Padang.

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Ashley (left, in light blue) and Evan (right, in maroon) sharing a light-hearted moment with fellow runners before the gun goes off

SAA President Ho Mun Cheong, had earlier alluded to the partnership between SAA and SCSM organiser, Ironman Asia, as raising the level of competitive distance running in Singapore by giving top Singapore runners a chance to compete amongst the elites at the region’s only IAAF Gold Label race. Mr. Ho’s sentiments was echoed by Mok Ying Ren, one of Singapore’s top marathoners and seven-time SCSM Singapore Men’s champion, who was confident the partnership would resonate with competitive runners in Singapore and also offer opportunities for a finer display of local sportsmanship as well as groom future young running talents. The partnership between SAA and Ironman Asia will last 2 years until 2018.

(all photo credits: ONEathlete)

For any queries, kindly email jed@onemanagement.sg

The (ONE)athlete’s High

Sometimes you get it, sometimes you don’t. But once you’ve tried it you’re always craving for it, and the more the better. If you’re one of those who wakes up at 5am to get in a heart-pumping workout before heading to work, then you must know how satisfying and addictive that endorphin rush after a sweaty session can really kickstart your day.

Now the buzz junkies must be wondering: Is there any other way to get that same athlete’s high without working for it?

Nuyou (女友)magazine’s anchor feature of “Men We Love” (MWL) is back for its 2017 edition. Conceptualised in 2002 and in its 15th year running, the annual MWL feature introduces 25 men with desirable qualities, such as successful careers, well-balanced family lives, athleticism, good looks and personality. It is also a fantastic opportunity to introduce and showcase talented men from various walks of life who have stood out in their respective fields, and bring out a different (less known) side to their public persona.

ONEathlete is proud to have 3 of our athletes featured in Nuyou’s 2017 Men We Love – #10 Jonathan Chong, #15 Tan Yiru and #19 Mok  Ying Ren! Check out these behind-the-scenes (#BTS) sneaks and read on for more below!

 

 

(Top-left): Mok Ying Ren getting some tender care from the make-up artists; (Top-right): Jonathan Chong having fun in his own time; (Bottom): Tan Yiru trying out his personal favourite pose (Photo Credits: #ONEathlete)

 

 

Jonathan Chong, 25 

National Canoeist

Managed by ONEathlete

 

 

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“(One of the craziest thing I did) was to pack my luggage in 7 minutes and spent 4 days on a small off-the-radar island with my friends.” – Jonathan Chong

 

 

Tan Yiru, 27 

National Hockey Player

Managed by ONEathlete

 

 

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“Men tend to let their ego get in the way. That’s why I believe the game is about survival of the humble.” – Tan Yiru

 

 

Mok Ying Ren, 29 

Double SEA Games Gold Medallist & National Marathoner

Managed by ONEathlete

 

 

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“For me, love is about patience. And with every passing day I find her more beautiful than ever before” – Mok Ying Ren

 

 

Photo credits:

  • Black/white photos from Nuyou (女友)magazine’s anchor feature of “Men We Love” (MWL) 2017.
  • Coloured photos from #ONEathlete.

Coach Jason Lawrence says work on your butt! 

Coach Jason Lawrence (@jacehaspace) shared on Race Preps & Injury Prevention during a lunch time talk at a civil service unit today! 

He also demonstrated some simple exercises for you to work on one of the most powerful body part – your butt! Train it up, cos it helps quite abit in runners related injury preventions! 


What’s more, recently he wrote a #runwithmok piece about running in #japan too! 

#runONExJL #runONE #coach #running #runner #run #talk #onecoach #jasonlawrence #kiwi #newzealand #nz #injury

Stars and Crescent Shine for Debutant Benjamin Ooi at 2017 Ironman World Championships

Press Release for IRONMAN World Championship – Benjamin Ooi

KONA, HAWAII – 24 year-old SMU student triathlete, Benjamin Ooi, had an amazing debut at the IRONMAN World Championship in Kona, Hawaii, and also his first ironman-distance event (3.9km swim, 180km bike and 42.2km marathon) to finish as top Singaporean male in an overall time of 10 hours 34 mins.

Joining Ben is also multiple Kona-qualifier and one of Singapore’s best female triathlete Choo Ling Er, who finished in 10 hours 32 mins.

As an ex SMU Aquathlon captain and water polo player, Ben was introduced to triathlon 2 years ago as a way of keeping fit for his annual army physical proficiency test (IPPT). Within that short span of time, Ben has gone from learning to ride a bike to racing the very best at the IRONMAN World Championship, a qualifications-only holy grail of triathlons.

Race Morning

The day started positively as the age group athletes were flagged off in waves after the Pro Men’s and Women’s race began at 6:35am. Ben showed his pedigree and water polo background, exiting the 3.9km swim in just over 62 mins along with a large pack of race-eager age groupers vying for position.                                                 

Heading into transition 1, Ben knew that he was the first Singaporean out of the water and stood a good chance. After coming in 2nd at his Kona-qualifying Hefei 70.3 race last October (which also happened to be his first ever 70.3 race), Ben had dedicated the past year getting ready for Kona. He even brought his bike along for his 4-month overseas exchange programme in Sao Paulo, Brazil (as part of his overseas exchange programme), so that training can continue uninterrupted. It shows the dedication and commitment he has in his pursuit of the sport.


Biking Through The Lava Fields

On the bike heading out to Hawi, the punishing headwinds and crosswinds were unforgiving and many athletes, including Ben, were starting to feel the effort. Uncharacteristically, Ben had to work hard to keep his focus just 40km into the bike. Perhaps the nerves were getting to this Kona debutante. 

Although Ben had clocked training rides as long as 160km, his packed academic schedule and congested roads in Singapore had conspired for a less-than-ideal prep on the bike. Ben had to reassure himself he had the legs just as the scorching lava fields were sapping his energy. Working through his hydration and fueling provided some mental respite as Ben tackled the elements and his inner monsters.

As is always, the return leg from the turnaround at Hawi, and then the last 50km, is where the damage is done as stronger riders start to pile on the pressure  before entering transition 2. With big gaps slowly opening up, Ben once again found himself stranded in no man’s land, mentally and physically, as he inched back towards transition. It was going to be a long day in office.


The Final Stretch

Once off the bike, Ben knew that he had his work cut out for him on the run. The abnormally hot weather at this year’s race, with temperatures reaching 40 degrees at the Energy Lab, had turned the run into a game of survival. Back on the tarmac in his running shoes, Ben felt the punishing 180km bike in his brick-like legs where every step felt heavy as lead. He made quick work to follow a group of strong runners as he settled into a strong pace. The race was approaching noon at this point, the unforgiving sun and heat giving running in Kona its infamous nickname – the ‘Ironman shuffle’.

Ben had flown into Hawaii earlier to acclimatize to the heat and humidity. His 20-hour training weeks, with runs that end as late as 1pm in Singapore and Sao Paulo, had also prepared him to face the tough and hot Kona. As a time crunched student-triathlete, Ben was always trodding a fine line between school, training, and the crucial 4th discipline of triathlon – recovery. Despite that, Ben professes it was not the allure of outgunning his competitors but bettering himself that drove him to this sport, and eventually led him to Kona.

“As an athlete, and in life, success is a matter of discipline and habit. Day in and day out, the open-ended challenge to better myself continues. I trusted my training and a little common sense to take me through the unknown come race day. Sometimes things don’t go flowingly, but I know my efforts have still made me a better athlete.

Shortly after the 21km mark, Ben still managed to stick together with the group as they try to conserve energy, mentally and physically, for the second half of the marathon and the Energy Lab –  an infamous 5-km stretch of heat and destitute. At the 28km mark, runners turn off the Queen K highway to complete a loop around the Lab and when they leave, they’re rarely the same. At this point, Ben knows it’s about finishing the run before it finishes you. He digs deep and knows that he must hurry, but more haste can mean less speed too. It’s a high-wire act of energy management in the last 10km, one that he has trained and rehearsed for the past year.


Finishing Down Ali’i Drive

As the Sun begins its gentle descent, Ben  finds the second wind he’s been searching the whole day. Covering the last 3km at 4:10min/km pace and with a final right turn down Ali’i Drive towards the coveted finish, Ben was greeted by his sister, Belinda Ooi, as well as brother-in-law and national marathoner ONEathlete Mok Ying Ren. Both of them had turned up to lend their fullest support for Ben’s Kona debut, providing valuable support as family and also professional advice as athlete, physiotherapist and doctor in company.

Ben is looking forward to enjoy the remaining of his vacation on the tropical sunny Hawaiian paradise before working towards a local race come year end, for a gratifying finish to what has been a long training season for him.

 

“Competing with the best here at Kona has given me an appreciation of the possibilities ahead. Very honoured to have raced with this bunch of dedicated triathletes. Last but not least, I’m unspeakably grateful to the throngs of supporters who lined the streets and livened up the race atmosphere, as well as to have had my family here cheering me on, and throughout the lengthy lead-up to this day!”

Benjamin will like to put on record his deep appreciation to his family and friends, as well as ONEathlete, whose unwavering support over the past year made today’s result possible.


For further enquiries, kindly email jed@onemanagement.sg. Thank you.

Whoever said accountants are plain characters?

IRONMAN World Championships Triathlete 
Managed by ONEathlete 
Singapore
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Whoever said accountants are plain characters? Not content in spending a day in and day out with his college textbooks, Ben joined set his mind on a new sporting challenge in triathlon and soon rose to captain his college Aquathlon team.
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2 years down the road, Ben qualified for the World Championship in his first 70.3 race at Hefei 2016 with a performance that bested other more experienced competitors. Perhaps coming from a background playing water polo similar to Ironman legend Dave Scott has had great benefits, or perhaps it’s his discipline for competition.
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Racing the Kona Ironman is doubly exciting for the young rising star of Singapore’s triathlon scene— an event of a lifetime, as it is—because is also to be his first full-Ironman race. Defying the odds is not new to the 25-year-old, born on a leap day.
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Since qualifying, Ben has pulled out all stops to excel atthe new substantial distance, including taking his training across the globe when he spent months living in São Paulo, Brasil as an exchange student. Racing has been a constantly evolving adventure he thoroughly revels in. No doubt his journey continues on after this World Championship.
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Look out for him in Kona, Hawaii and wave to say hi to this suave gentleman with a sunny disposition, or simply follow him on Instagram, @ironmanbooi for regular updates!

Singaporeans Hungry for Success at Berlin Marathon 2017

Press Release for Berlin Marathon 2017 – Evan Chee (PB 2:42:18)

 

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Berlin 24 Sep 2017 – The sun was nowhere to be seen on this cold Berlin morning of the last Sunday in September. Yet more than 43,000 participants from 137 countries, including 106 Singaporeans, had converged onto Brandenburg Gate ready to conquer the 44th edition of the BMW-Berlin Marathon.

 

This year’s Berlin marathon had also attracted plenty of pre-race hype focused on a battle between the ‘big three’ of Eluid Kipchoge, Wilson Kipsang, Kenenisa Bekele which could lead to a new marathon World Record under 2:02:57. Eventually, Eluid Kipchoge would go on to take the win in a time of 2:03:32, finishing 14 seconds ahead of Ethiopian Guye Andola, a half-marathon specialist (personal best 59:07) who finished with the world’s fastest marathon debut besting Dennis Kimetto’s debutante record of 2:04:16 set in 2012.

 

As in previous years, the Singapore embassy in Berlin hosted a lunch reception for Singaporeans participating in the Berlin marathon. Known for its fast course and iconic finish under the historic Brandenburg gate, the Berlin race is hugely popular amongst Singaporean marathoners, new and experienced alike. Leading this year’s representation are prolific elite athletes, like 2015 SEA Games national runner Melvin Wong, who is competing in his first Berlin Marathon, as well as Evan Chee, who is managed by ONEathlete and trains with Flexifitness under Singapore’s national marathon record holder M. Rameshon.

 

 

ONEathlete, Evan Chee, 35 at the iconic Brandenburg gate.

 

Remarkably, this is Evan’s 3rd marathon in 2017, having set his personal best of 2:45 at the Tokyo Marathon in Feb before finishing 4th (and as Top Asian) at the Bangkok Midnight Marathon. 2017 has been a punishing race calendar for him who has had to frequently travel overseas for business, but Evan seems to be taking it in his stride. Because of the unpredictability of overseas run routes and travel schedules, gym treadmills became his training partner of choice. Prior to Berlin, Evan frequently clocked treadmill runs of up to 30km, which honed his mental focus as much as it did his fitness.

 

On race morning, the heavy rain before the start made for a very wet and humid race with slippery road conditions. The surprising chill took a lot of Singaporean runners by surprise; many were aiming for fast timings and personal bests, but were not adequately acclimatized to take full advantage of the race conditions.

 

“I am happy that my race went well despite the heavy rain and wet conditions. It was a fantastic experience being here and celebrating the togetherness of international marathoning with my participation. I also had my own fanboy moments watching 3 of the very best marathoners in history battle it out today, so it was very inspiring and enjoyable experience for me, and many of the Singaporean runners as well.”

 

 

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Evan Chee in red pulling through the chilly weather.

 

 

Coming off months of hectic business travel, a new work environment, and a 3rd-place hard-fought finish at the POSB Passion Kids Run 10km race just 2 weeks before Berlin Marathon, Evan had set himself realistic targets heading into this race. Evan also caught up with Matthias Hoffman, a Hong Kong-based German runner and fellow Adidas athlete who most recently came in 3rd at the Sundown marathon in Singapore.

 

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Having a running group for the first half of the punishing race helped Evan stay focused on the task at hand. Crossing the halfway mark in just under 1:20, Evan quickly realised he was on track for a sub 2:40 finish and set his sights on that target  despite losing touch with the group he had been following. That he was sharing the same course with the marathon greats, and quite possibly partake in marathoning history, gave Evan the mental edge to overcome rough patches when he was alone during the punishing second half of the race. Towards the final kilometre or two, Evan pulled away to finish strong in a timing of 2:42:18, lowering his personal best (set just 6 months ago) by over 3 minutes!

 

With another personal best in his bag, Evan is looking forward to enjoy the remaining of his stay in Berlin before working towards his fourth and last marathon for the year, the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon in December 2017.

 

Wasnt exactly the most ideal weather conditions ☔️ at Berlin Marathon this year but it is definitely a good learning experience on handling wet cold race 😄. ・ 1st half of the race went by quickly & comfortably in 1h19min by sticking with a sub 2h40m group and was hopeful for a similar 2nd half run. Alas had some untimely issue with the non-waterproof laser printed bib & broke off from the run group. Thankful & happy to eventually finish with a new PB time of 2h42min18s 🙏🏼. ・ Congrats & nice run to Nicholas, fellow #teamflexi Andreas (@icyandi), Desmond, Jennifer (@queen43m), Felicia, fellow #adidasathlete Matt (@matt_the_hoff), Melvin (@melvinwongyh) and all who ran today 😄! ・ Also thank you to all the support from @flexifitnessconsultancy (Coach Rameshon & all team mates), @runoneapp and also @adidas_sg. ・ https://runone.co/2017/09/25/singaporeans-hungry-for-success-at-berlin-marathon-2017/ ・ #adidassg #adidasberlin #adidasrunning #adidasrunners #flexifitness #runONE #ONEathlete #fitspo #runner #runsg #justrunnn #sgfitfam #runnersofinstagram #instarunner #sgrunners #justrunlah #runsociety #evantravelruns #takechargeberlin #berlinmarathon2017 #beatberlin42

A post shared by Evan Chee (@evanchee) on

 

As mentioned on his social media, Evan will like to put on record his deep appreciation to his coach, M. Rameshon, and training mates from Flexifitness, as well as his supporting sponsors, Adidas and ONEathlete, whose unwavering support was key in making today’s results possible.

 

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