Day 3: 20 Safra runners join in to give support

Morale was high as 20 runners joined ultramarathoners Lim Nghee Huat, 61, and Yong Yuen Cheng, 43, yesterday in their quest to run 50km daily for 50 days to mark the country's 50th birthday.

Most of the 20 runners from the Safra Running Club, ran 25km with Mr Yong and Mr Lim, who were into the third day of their feat.

But Ms Koh Hui Ping, a 37-year-old designer, and 59-year-old Yong Ing Hwa, a general manager, accompanied the ultramarathoners on their entire 50km run.

"The support was encouraging, and we could motivate each other in a group," said Mr Yong, a physical education teacher.

Ms Koh led the pack for most of the way as she paced the runners in a route covering West Coast Park and Lower Delta Road.

"It's territory that I am familiar with anyway," said Ms Koh, a Jurong resident. The seasoned runner placed second in a recent Nanjing Mountain Marathon.

Mr Yong Ing Hwa, who runs 10km twice a week, said this was a chance to challenge himself and show his support.

Thanks to cooler weather, Mr Yong Yuen Cheng and Mr Lim took six hours and 55 minutes to finish yesterday's route, compared with seven hours and five minutes the day before.

The route did, however, pass urban areas near VivoCity and paths narrowed due to construction. These posed a challenge. Said Mr Yong Yuen Cheng: "Traffic lights also affected our momentum when we wanted to go fast. But there are more people in busy areas, so it is good for raising awareness."

kashc@sph.com.sg