Good planning, an interesting race route and on-route entertainment. These are some of the things avid runner Nel Tulsiani is looking forward to at this year's The Straits Times run on Sept 23.
The 47-year-old, who competes in over 20 races a year, will be participating in the 18.45km category of the ST Run for the fifth time.
He said: "The ST Run is the only one that has an 18.45km distance, and because of this, the route is quite interesting, and different from the normal 21km (half-marathon) races."
He added that he appreciated not having to deal with bottlenecks throughout the route "which normally occur at different points in other races, often at the start".
He noted: "Plus, there is entertainment every few kilometres as well. This makes it livelier than other races, and also pumps runners up and gets them motivated to keep going."
The ST Run, backed by presenting sponsor Panasonic, features three race categories: a 5km fun run, a 10km competitive run and an 18.45km route which marks the year the newspaper was founded.
As with previous editions of the run, which is into its sixth year, there will be live music and performances along the run routes.
FUN ON THE RUN
The ST Run is the only one that has an 18.45km distance, and because of this, the route is quite interesting... Plus, there's entertainment every few kilometres as well. This makes it livelier than other races, and also pumps runners up and gets them motivated to keep going.
RUNNER NEL TULSIANI, on the ST Run.
All three categories will see participants start outside the Singapore Sports Hub, and make their way across the Merdeka Bridge.
Runners in the 5km and 10km categories will enjoy a waterfront view as a significant portion of their routes sees them go past the Marina Reservoir and Kallang Riverside Park.
For the 18.45km category, an even more scenic race awaits. Participants will pass by the F1 Pit Building and the Singapore Flyer before going past The Float@ Marina Bay and the iconic Esplanade.
The route next heads to the Merlion Park and through to the Promotory@Marina Bay, providing a stunning view of Marina Bay Sands (MBS).
Runners will then pace along the MBS waterfront boardwalk before heading across to the greenery of the Gardens by the Bay and Marina Barrage.
The last stretch will see them go past Marina East Drive and then Tanjong Rhu Road, back towards the Sports Hub, where they will finish inside the National Stadium, along with runners from the other two categories.
The ST Run is so far the only community run where participants get to finish their race on the National Stadium track.
Ms Talia Lim, 36, who will be running the 10km event for a fourth time, said this was a particular thrill for her. "I have done it once before, and the experience (running into the National Stadium) makes you feel like a real athlete."
More excitement can be had even before the run.
The race-pack collection will have a festive feel this year, with participants able to try new activities and shop for bargains. The festival takes place at the OCBC Arena Hall 1 from Sept 20 to 22.
• Registration for the ST Run closes tomorrow. Sign up at www.straitstimesrun.com