Marathoner Evan Chee’s Tour de Europe

21 Nov 2018 – While most of us have always imagined an ideal Europe road trip to be driving a caravan through the winding Alps and French countryside, or a shop(eat)-till-you-drop magical experience on the streets of London and Madrid, Evan is not like most of us.

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The 38-year old marathoner had always dreamed of racing a half marathon in Europe and the IAAF gold label, AIMS-certified Valencia Half-Marathon checked all the boxes. It was known to be a fast and flat course (world records were set here before), and the cooling conditions in late October meant the race’s schedule fitted perfectly into Evan’s overall preparation for Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 6 weeks later.

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Valencia Half-Marathon 2018

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Evan arrived in Valencia, also known as the city of running, after 24 hours of non-stop traveling and made it to one of the biggest race expos he has seen. The actual race kicked off at 9am on a cool Sunday morning. With temperatures hovering between 10 to 15 degrees, conditions couldn’t have been better along with the electrifying crowd support lined up along both sides of the race route and excellent race organization.

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In the end, Kenya’s Abraham Kiptum broke the Men’s Half-Marathon world record clocking 58:18 to take five seconds off the mark set by Eritrea’s Zersenay Tadese in 2010. Evan would go on to clock 1:19 for a personal best and finishing in 94th place and 2nd Asian runner. While Evan had gone into the race with higher expectations, it was still a timely confidence booster after spending most of 2018 nursing a niggling leg injury which had hampered his training.

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‘THE’ Marathon

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2 weeks later, Evan would go on to run another epic European race, the Athens Classic Marathon, the birthplace of all modern-day Marathons. While it is an IAAF gold label race today, the race’s heritage and history stretch all the way back to 490BC. The Athens Marathon traces the same route that the legendary Greek messenger, Pheidippides, ran from the Battle of Marathon to Athens to announce the Greek’s victory over the Persians!

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Runners from around the world gather at Adidas Runbase in Athens

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As part of the pre-race lead-up, Evan had a rare opportunity to visit Adidas Runbase in Athens and meet like-minded Adidas Runners (AR) from all around the world (including Paris, London, Vienna, Dubai, Madrid, and Milan). Runbase is a 6-story facility catered for AR with running and all sorts of fitness sessions taking place almost daily!

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Group shot with Adidas Runners in front of the Acropolis

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Together, they would all participate in a shake-out sightseeing run organized by AR Athens to showcase the best of Athens sights and sounds, ending with a group shot taken in front of the Acropolis and a pasta party right after!

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Athens Classic Marathon 2018

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The Athens Classic Marathon counts as one of the most difficult major marathon race with a nearly 20km-long uphill climb, which dwarves the SCSM Sheares Bridge climb at the 37km mark. The course begins in the town of Marathon before passing by the tomb of Athenian soldiers, turning towards the city of Athens before finishing up at the Panathinaiko Stadium. The stadium is a landmark site for athletics competition in ancient times, and also where the 1896 and 2004 Olympics Marathon chose as its finishing point.

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xIn a fitting tribute to the race and area’s history, it has become a standard practice before every year’s race to carry the Marathon Flame, which is lit at the Tomb of the Battle of Marathon, to the finish point at the Stadium.

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Right from the start, Evan planned to maintain a comfortable long run pace as he tackled the seemingly endless uphills and slopes. After crossing the halfway mark in 1:30:30 as planned, Evan knew the race had only just begun with another 10km of slopes to go in what was proving to be a much more challenging route than SCSM. The Greek messenger, Pheidippides, couldn’t have been happier than Evan when he caught sight of the Stadium finish point, crossing the line in 3:00:50 with an average pace of 4:15′.

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Wrapping up his Europe ‘road trip’, Evan will like to thank everyone from AR Athens, particularly captain Deniz Dimaki, whose efforts helped make all this possible. It was a whirlwind 3 weeks in Europe but it turned out to be an out-of-this-world experience running ‘literally’ from Valencia to Madrid, Barcelona to Santorini before calling it a day in Athens.

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While his legs may feel like they’re running on empty (for the next couple days), but his heart is definitely full. Be sure to check in with Evan as he lines up for the biggest race on Singapore’s running calendar – the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon!

ONEathlete Ben Moreau wins ONE at Straits Times Run 2018!

23 Sep 2018 – ONEathlete Ben Moreau took home the top honors in the Straits Times Run 2018 Men’s 18.45km category, winning in a time of 62 mins 46 secs, which was over 1 minute quicker than last year’s winner, Kenyan runner James Karanga. It was his maiden run in this race! (Top featured image by Straits Times Run Facebook)

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Article was published on Straits Times on 24 September HERE 

Ben, a previous Commonwealth Games representative, has steadily chalked up a series of race wins in the past few months, such as the Performance Series 10km as well as the inaugural ‘King of the Hills’ race, and demonstrated that he still has the legs to not let age (and his rivals) catch up with him.

 

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The trio ONEathlete who finished the race with no sweat!
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Evan (centre) sharing a post-race moment with fellow ONEathlete and national marathoner Ashley Liew (right), with RunONE co-founder Jed (left)

 

In the Men’s 10km category, ONEathlete Evan Chee finished as the fastest Singaporean and 4th overall with a time of 37 mins 7 secs. Evan, who is turning 38, is also showing no signs of slowing as he heads into peak race season in Singapore. He placed 3rd (Local Men’s) at Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 2017 and is looking to better his results this year. He has also recently shared his thoughts on Masters running where he hoped to promote and encourage the idea of running as an inclusive sport for everyone, regardless of age, gender and athleticism. This was also echoed by Guest-of-Honour, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu, who praised the event for being inclusive, and said: “It is great to see people of different backgrounds coming together here today.”

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ONEathlete Ashley Liew who also ran his maiden ST Run, finished 7th overall, and 3rd local in the 10km category, was in high spirits post-race. Ashley’s last marathon was at the Gold Coast, and it seems like he will now have some tips for his counterpart who will be participating in the 2019 Edition, as part of his Champion prize! The prize was sponsored by Tourism Queensland for the Straits Times Run 2018!

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Minister MCCY Ms Grace Fu together with National Marathoner Mok Ying Ren (right), Ashley Liew (middle), Evan Chee (right) and RunONE Co-founder Jed Senthil (2nd fr right). Photo by Ming Ham

In returning to the Sports Hub after a 2-year hiatus when the race venue relocated to the  F1 Pit Building and Padang, the 6th edition of the race saw over 13,000 participants, most of whom were eyeing the uniquely memorable opportunity of being able to finish the race inside the 55,000-seat national stadium.

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The ONE Family at the Sports Stadium

Kelly Latimer and Ross had the uphill task of getting the moods up on the early Sunday morning! Despite the 5am flag-off, the mood at the start was lively and electrifying as participants got ready to enjoy the scenic route. Unlike in 2017 where the race started on the Esplanade Bridge, this year’s route was a nod to its original venue at the Sports Hub.

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The 10km runners at the start line! 

 

Read more about the STRun Festival & Mok Ying Ren’s Race Clinic HERE 

Read more about what you can do-post ST Run, on this week’s #AskMok HERE 

ST: Shaheed serves and sweeps ’em all!

04 Aug 2018 – At the recently concluded Singapore National Games – STA Open Pesta Sukan Tennis Championship 2018, ONEathlete and national tennis player, Shaheed Alam, secured a clean sweep across all 3 categories by winning the Men’s Singles (6-0, 6-3), Men’s Doubles (7-5, 6-4) and Mixed Doubles.

This was also covered on The Straits Times on 18 Aug 2018.

Shaheed bettered his results from the last STA Open Tennis C’ship in 2016, when he won the Men’s Singles and Mixed Doubles but lost in the Men’s Doubles finals to narrowly miss out on the hat-trick.

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2018 Singapore National Games Tennis at Kallang Tennis Centre on 2nd Aug 2018 6pm match on Court 3 between Shaheed Alam vs. Arbaquez Israel Jr. Shaheed Alam hits a forehand return. Photo by AndrewJKTan/ SportSG & ONEathlete

Earlier this year, Shaheed had won the Davis Cup Group 4 match with TeamSG Tennis and his victory at the Pesta Sukan C’ship shows again why Shaheed is a note-worthy rising star on our local tennis scene. Driven by the same motivation to do his family proud, Shaheed commits himself to put in his best during every training, rain or shine. That mentality proved to be the difference when he had to play 3 Finals matches back-to-back in a 5-hour ‘marathon’ which included a tie-breaker in the first set of the Men’s Doubles.

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Celebrating a clutch winner to win the tie-breaker set 7-5 in the Men’s Doubles. Photo by Manoj Banavali/ Sport SG & ONEathlete

Shaheed has certainly proved that he has the heart and lungs to go the distance when he took victory over Israel Arbarquez from Philippines in the Men’s Singles quarterfinals match which lasted over 3-and-half hours.

The hat-trick of wins ultimately took a lot of fitness and mental strength, but it also gave Shaheed the confidence knowing that he is able to hang in there and compete among the best even when the going gets tough. The SNG Pesta Sukan Tennis Championships invites experienced players with professional backgrounds and credentials and is pegged differently from the STA tournament which caters more to the junior level players. Tennis was included as part of the Singapore National Games for the first time in 2016.

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2018 Singapore National Games Tennis at Kallang Tennis Centre on 2nd Aug 2018 6pm match on Court 3 between Shaheed Alam vs. Arbaquez Israel Jr. Shaheed Alam’s Service motion. Photo by AndrewJKTan/SportSG & ONEathlete

While pleased with his performance, having seen that the results of his training paid off, Shaheed knows the honor is not his alone to claim. He is extremely grateful for his teammates, Rohan Kamdar (Men’s Doubles) and Evelina Kontareva (Mixed Doubles), whose support and encouragement carried him mentally and physically through the rough patches in this tournament. “Their support is also crucial as I play these back-to-back categories,” he recalls with humility.

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Shaheed sharing a proud moment on stage with his Mixed Doubles partner, Evelina Kontareva. Photo by Manoj Banavali / SportSG & ONEathlete

He will also like to thank his equipment sponsors, Head and Pro’s Pro, as well as Futuro for their invaluable support,  both on, and off, the court. Much credit is also due to the team of officials and medics, as well as Team Nila supporters and, last but not least, his family and friends, who have been his motivation, advice, and support ever since he embarked on his tennis career.

Asked about his plans and intentions, Shaheed has one eye firmly fixed on the 2019 SEA Games where he hopes to qualify and be a medal contender. For now, he will be starting on his polytechnic industrial internship as he continues working towards bigger dreams in his budding tennis career.

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Shaheed’s bedrock of strength and his pillar(s) of support. Photo by Manoj Banavali / SportSG & ONEathlete

ONEathlete “can’t wait” at Sundown Marathon 2018

20 May 2018 – The night race in its 11th edition, had 25,500 runners mentally fixed that ‘sleep can wait’, but our wolf pack differed. Finishing the race fast to get to sleep fast was a motivation.

After a less than satisfactory race performance few weeks ago, ONEathlete Banjamin Quek comes back strongly with an outstanding 2nd-place finish in the Sundown Marathon 2018 10km race (Local Men) with a time of 38:18.

We caught up with Banjamin after the race, donned in his Under Armour matt black singlet and stylish blue racer shoes. He knew he had finished 5th overall and so, “It was quite a pleasant surprise to know that I ended up 2nd in my category. Heading into this race, there was definitely an element of wanting to prove myself and overcome my last disappointing performance. That’s why this comeback race was a very satisfying one at that!”

The 26-year old full-time athlete added that “the 10.7km course was admittedly challenging with lots of sharp turns. However, the organisers have stepped up to the challenge this year and is probably why the event attracted more overseas runners this year”

Also running a 10km, shortly after flagging it off, was Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth, Mr Baey Yam Keng. The endearingly dubbed ‘Selfie MP’ is also an avid runner.

In the half-marathon distance, 3rd-place SCSM 2017 finisher Evan Chee, and top Singaporean male finisher at the 2017 Kona Ironman World Championship Ben Ooi, were believed to have finished overall 12th and 18th position, with a time of 1 hour 27min and 1 hour 31min respectively.

Crossing the finish line despite combating some digestive troubles during the race, Evan was satisfied on the note that it was a good lead up run to his upcoming Gold Coast Airport Marathon. In what was otherwise, a competitive category, the top positions were swiped by our overseas performance athletes.

With that, all 3 #ONEathlete representatives finished within top 10 in their respective categories to round off an action-packed weekend for ONEathlete!

As the adage goes – luck comes to those who are prepared to seize it. For someone who’ve had to work as consistently and twice as hard like Banjamin, his results this early morning proves that success is where discipline and opportunity meets. Banja’s days sometimes stretches as long as 14 hours with two training sessions before and after his work as a tutor. The drive and commitment Banjamin continues to pour into his passion for running shows that winning is a simple choice, just not simply made.

Banjamin admitted that he struggled in the closing kilometers of the race, when his legs began to cramp so he switched his focus from getting a fast time to getting his body to the finish line. His mental strategy to ‘tune-out’ from the hurt and hone in on what he has control over has served him well in many races, including this.

Banjamin’s courage and resilience in not quitting has written a new chapter in a story that is not defined by how far he has come or how high he has climbed!

So once again, congratulations to ONEathlete runners, as well as to all finishers at this morning’s event!

P/s: Special shoutout to the beautiful Kelly Latimer for running from start point, to finish point to main race village and all over again a few times, to emcee the night event!!

(ONE)Athlete Passionately Giving Back to Society

First published by MCCY Press Release / Excerpt of Min Grace Fu speech

8. Our athletes play highly significant and meaningful roles, both in and outside the sporting arena. Your sporting talent and achievements put you in a unique position as role models; so I urge you – all of you nominated today and all those who are striving to be on the podium – to use this privileged position to inspire others to give back to fellow Singaporeans, to bring positive change to our community. And I’m heartened that our athletes have begun doing so.

9. I’d just like to quote one or two of them. Yip Pin Xiu, the Straits Times Athlete of the Year in 2015, is one such example. Pin Xiu was named as an athlete mentor for last year’s ASEAN Para Games, as well as the chef de mission for the Singapore contingent at the Asian Youth Para Games in Dubai last December, where she was able to use her vast experience from previous major Games to mentor a young team, and to inspire them to greater heights. I remember a quote from her: “I want to give back to society and help the future generation of athletes. Other than showing others what sports can do, I hope to create more awareness that ‘disabled does not mean unabled, and also to inspire others around me.”

 

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Min Grace Fu (left most) with Double SEA Games Gold Medalist & National Record Holder, Mok Ying Ren (second from left); during the baton run in May 2017. 

 

10. We also saw that three Team Singapore athletes – Mok Ying Ren (marathon), Shaheed Alam (tennis), and Ren-ne Ong (badminton)  – took part in a public fundraising event just two months ago to help raise $10,000 worth of sporting apparel for youth under SportCares. On behalf of the youth, we thank these athletes for doing their part to really make an impact and improve the lives of others.

(Ed note: Read More https://runone.co/2018/01/19/team-futuro-trio-run-the-talk-for-sportcares/ )

 

11. These are just two examples of how our athletes are using sport as a force for good. I’m happy that many of you are doing likewise, and I encourage you to connect with others in your community, reach out to the less fortunate, and be role models for younger athletes, even as you train hard and strive for sporting success.

Ashley Liew engaged at Tokyo (Marathon)!

 The 2018 edition of the Tokyo Marathon was held on Sunday, 25 February 2018, with a grand total of 320,794 applicants fighting for the 35,500 full marathon slots. One of the most popular World Marathon Majors and the only in Asia, Tokyo Marathon is well-known for its efficient and smooth organization as well as fantastic crowd support, not to mention the quality caliber of Japanese runners which translates into a steeped field and sweeping fast finishes.

This year’s race saw uncharacteristically cold temperatures on race morning, and along with a slightly revised race route, meant lots of uncertainty even for seasoned marathoners like Ashley Liew, one of Singapore’s top marathoner who finished 2nd at the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon (SCSM) 2017 just 10 weeks ago.

Although this was an important season opener race for Ashley, he hasn’t had much time to prepare for it the way he would have liked, owing partly to his hectic work schedule.  Many an occasion he’s had to complete a 2 to 3-hour long run after work, which meant ending past midnight and then returning to his work the very next morning. Such is the discipline and commitment required of him, which Ashley feels is worth it because he’s realizing the true worth of the potential he has been blessed with.

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Sandra (left) and Ashley (right) at the Tokyo Marathon Race Pack Expo

For Ashley, the crux of training is not just the sacrifices by the athlete, but also the family and friends who stood by his side and supported him over the months and years, and having it all boil down to under 3 hours come race day.

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Which is why it’s also fitting that on the evening of the Tokyo Marathon (25 Feb 2018), Ashley had the privilege of appearing on ChannelNewsAsia’s SportsWorld Weekend, where he candidly touched on his experience as a Singapore marathoner. Ashley recalled how his harrowingly close encounter at the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing was a grounding moment for him to ‘make the most of we have, right here right now, rather than waiting for tomorrow‘, particularly as he continues to walk the fine-line balancing work and training while working towards the 18th Asian Games later in August this year, as well as qualifying for the 2019 SEA Games.

Tokyo Marathon 2018

After nearly a decade of running, it was probably the culmination of these life experiences and stories, as well as the friendship ties and bonds, that carried him through the bad patches, such as when he was clipped at the 36km mark and suffered a bad hamstring cramp for the agonizing 6km remaining. Thankfully, he preserved and went on to complete his season-opening race in 2:41, over 9 minutes faster than his finish at SCSM 2017.

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Sandra and Ashley sharing a joyous moment together after he completed the Tokyo Marathon in 2:41:41 (official nett time)

#AshandSandra Engagement

Ashley’s no. 1 supporter and then-girlfriend, Sandra, also flew over to Tokyo to accompany Ashley for this race and assist with pre-race preparation and arrangements so that Ashley could focus on what he needed to do. Having his loved one be there with him, for him, meant a lot to Ashley and he feels that her presence and support in many ways underscores what his athletic pursuit embodies – his passion and priorities in life. This is perhaps one of the many reasons that urged Ashley to commit to a lifetime together and propose to Sandra on this trip! The couple were on Mount Fuji, and in cloud nine, no less!

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And Sandra said YES!

From us here at runONE and ONEathlete, we extend our heartiest congratulations to Sandra and Ashley, and wishing you both a blessed beginning to the next chapter in your lives together, and Godspeed Ashley, as you train towards the upcoming 18th Asian Games!

ONE Turns ONE!

While the legs and arms of athletes in their prime lose their drive with time, their purpose remains as sure as the signposts that remain standing even as the years pass and surroundings change. Similarly, the ‘purpose’ behind any organisation matters, and its compelling to celebrate a milestone and stay focused on that vision! In that way …

The RunONE & ONEathlete came together to celebrate its first anniversary (on 3 Feb 2017) with a cozy gathering of the ONE family of athletes/staff members; as well as their family and loved ones. “We can’t do anything without the support of our significant other and our loved ones. Thus it’s only logical that we celebrate the occasion together with them,” our co-founders concurred. It brought a gathering when we remember again what it was like at the beginning – thoughts that had sat on a printed page but echo through our lives; emotions and friendships that, rather than simply replicate the peal that produced it, subtly transforms as we move and adapt, as ONE.

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Celebration

The evening started with some comfort food, home-made brownies, and a little ice-breaker to know others better. Soon after, the co-founders Jed and Mok recapped their vision for ONE and the story behind the humble genesis, a year ago. It has been a fruitful (read: hectic) and memorable year of achievement for both RunONE and ONEathlete as we grew from strength to strength, from a team of 2 to close to 20 today.

One of the evening’s highlight was when athletes from ONEathlete took to the stage to share their personally memorable moments as they look back on their journey with ONE. As a professional athlete, the gruelling pursuit of excellence and success, and the sacrifices it exacts on them as well as their family and loved ones, can often make for a lonely journey that few can understand, and fewer undertake. If only for a few hours on this January evening, professional sportsmen and women came together, not so much as competitors toeing the starting line in their own rights, but a community of athletic sojourners seeking out each other’s company as they continue writing the story of their lives.

 

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Athletes taking turn to share their stories and journey with ONEathlete

 

The team also took the opportunity to celebrate Jed’s birthday, the week earlier, (with a mini surprise that was hard to pull off given his eagle attention to details) as he has been personally instrumental in bringing the team together; and devoting time/effort to know and help each and every member of the ONE family.  It was a doubly joyous occasion to celebrate a significant milestone for these two whose lives have become intricately inter-twinned over the past year.

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Cutting the cake to celebrate the double joyous occasions!

Milestone

From supporting events for social causes, participating in a host of competitive races both locally and overseas, strengthening athlete profiles through various media outreach platforms including print and social media, press releases, TV interviews and partnership opportunities with agencies and sponsors, as well as giving back to the community by supporting meaningful events such as Community Chest HeartStrings Walk 2017 as well as authoring training programs for ST Run in the City 2017 and Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon 2017, it has been a deeply fulfilling year during which ONE has always sought to maintain focus and clarity of its purpose – to support athletes so that they can focus on their training, and to enable everyday people to train like the elites – all while holding firmly to a social enterprise business model and ethos.

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Thank you

It’s impossible to go far without the eco-system. On behalf of the ONE team, Jed and Mok will like to convey their heartfelt gratitude on this special occasion:

We want to thank our supportive and understanding partners/sponsors for their invaluable friendship, our members of the press who worked hand-in-hand to get the efforts out, our enthusiastic running/sports community for their continuous support, our family and loved ones for being there with us every step of the way, and our members of the ONE family who have enjoined us on this wonderful (and frightfully exciting) journey, as well as each and every one of you who we’ve had the pleasure of crossing paths with, and, through your words and deeds, given us a hand along the way!

Much thanks and love! We ONE more!

with thanks,

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ONE Family

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.

The event, which was also covered by Straits Times and Run Singapore, 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!”

In addition to the 25 things you probably did not know about Mok, the national marathoner 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

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

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.