Monday, November 29, 2010

Week 2: Ateneo Law Blue Race

The process of registering for this run should have raised a few red flags for me. It required going to either the Ateneo Professional Schools in Rockwell or the Ateneo Lex office in the Loyola Heights campus. Rockwell was closer for me so I went there.

So, I get to the Rockwell campus in the morning and find the Ateneo Human Rights Center, which is where the registration should be, but I find just a single lady at her desk who could only tell me to wait for the students to be around, which would be at some undetermined time in the future. I then spend the next hour or two exploring the building, poking my head curiously into places I don't belong, and eventually wasting away the time on the internet-- until finally someone comes long and facilitates the registration.

Ateneo Law Blue Race
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Ateneo de Manila University

Distance: 5K / Time: 31:23 / Rank 28 of 104
A few days before the run I get a text message from the organizers saying that they had somehow lost the list of names associated with the numbers, and asked me to give my info. I replied as they ordered, and wished them a heartfelt best of luck. Losing the list of participant names is a big deal.

What pleased me most about this race was that the race route is pretty much just two loops of my usual jogging route when I was a dormer in Ateneo (though I would go all the way to the end of the high school road, to the Moro Lorenzo Sports Complex). It also gives me a chance to see what's changed in the past year since I've been there-- Ateneo never runs out of new things to construct. Also, being held in the Ateneo campus on an early Sunday morning meant that I wouldn't have the satisfaction of having traffic stopped for my sake.

The small pre-race crowd.

Tree-lined road in the Ateneo campus.

The distances for the race were 3K, 5K, and 7.5K. I have no idea why they would truncate it to a strange non-standard distance of 7.5K when they easily could have drawn a 10K distance with another loop or two within the campus.

One website said that they were expecting a maximum of 1000 runners, as though they were dampening expectations in case they ran out of singlets or whatever. The reality was that only 256 people actually participated, in all race categories. This was perhaps because of the inconvenient registration place, or maybe a lack of promotion, but I imagine the organizers would be disappointed with the turnout too.

The actual race results were not posted until 2.5 weeks later, and that only came after I personally emailed several organizers. They explained that their database was screwy since many registered on the race day itself. I'm a gracious participant and I say thanks, but another person blasted the organizers for the problems. When they finally posted the results on the Facebook page (with only bib numbers, not actual names) it came with an apology, and an appeal for understanding since the organizers were all full-time law students.

I hate to admit it but all that really says is that one can't expect competence from full-time Ateneo students of law.

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