Thursday, October 25, 2012

Nike We Run KL 2012 Aftermath

I'm pretty sure those in the running scene would have heard of the big Nike We Run KL 2012 disaster that happened a few weeks ago. Sad to say, what you have heard, is true. It was everything you've heard, and a little bit more.

All geared up for a good run, which ended in frustration

The entire event seemed doomed from the start, so let's recap the Top 10 reasons why this year's Nike Run 2012 was such a disaster.

1. They opened pre-registration to college and university kids, on the pretext of encouraging the youth to be healthy. What they didn't expect was that (maybe) these kids join just for the sake of joining, and most are following their bf/ gf to enter. As a result, the roads become congested with schoolkids walking, HOLDING HANDS and disrupting those who are there to run. It's not a mall, neither is it a park. You should be there running, or at least brisk walking (if you are too tired to run), or try to encourage your better half to go at a faster pace, to try to get a better time. You are not there to paktoh please -.-" Nike, these group of people belong to another category, so please get them a different gun time.

With our shoes and DTags

2. When registration finally opened to the public, it was complete havoc because registration is only available online. This is not your first year organising a run. There is bound to be A LOT of traffic as everyone will wana try to get a piece of the pie. But because there were no necessary measures taken (or maybe there was, it just wasn't enough), your website lagged, the payments had a hard time going through, and your confirmation emails were sent only two days after registration. Then you'll also need to consider those who are at work (like me) and couldn't manage to register when the 'doors' opened. Luckily for me, I had friends to help me. What about those that didn't?

3. The goodies in the Race Pack are good and all, but one gripe I have is the 20% discount voucher. This coupon is only valid within 3 days of redemption during the race pack collection. Consider extending this because not everyone can go to Nike during the collection period. Really potong stim eh -.-"

4. Wider lanes. Running along AKLEH was ok, but the U turn was so narrow, and after we got off the AKLEH, a four lane path became a one lane path...It was a loooong bottleneck. And again, another opportunity for the sweet couples to HHWW (holding hands while walking) *facepalm*.

5. Muddy field and no steps were taken to mitigate this. It has been raining the whole day. When you have your finishing line at a field, isn't it just prudent to prepare platforms instead of just cardboard boxes to stop shoes from getting muddy? I'm not talking about the normal slightly muddy fields (if it was, I wouldn't be this disappointed). I'm talking about a full onslaught of shoes getting sucked into the mud, and everywhere you looked, it was muddy, and there wasn't a path you can get into considerably to keep your shoes from filling with mud.

The crowd. Spot the students!

6. Bottleneck at the finishing line. At the end of the race, there the bottleneck was again. People couldn't even step happily on the finishing line at the end as they were caught in a human jam. Those who wanted to clock a good time could only watch in frustration as precious seconds ticked by and they were only inching closer to the line. After the finishing line, there was only about 50m of room to walk before the herd was shepherded off to the right to head to Padang Merbok via a very small and narrow lane. Most runners couldn't finish the race properly and precious seconds ticked by while we were stuck in a sea of people who got caught in the bottleneck, most of which had to stop and look for alternative ways to get into the field as there was a copious amount of mud waiting just after the platform :/

7. Finisher tee collection. There are 15k participants, and you would have know which size shirts have the most number of people. Make more of those lanes for faster collection of shirts to avoid that bottleneck again.

We ran through the toll yo!

8. Shuttle services. I think, in the space since I was there at Padang Merbok from 730pm until 10pm, I only saw one RapidKL bus take off for KLCC. Perhaps there were others as well, but they were DEFINITELY NOT within the time frame of every ten minutes. In the end, we just decided to walk to Masjid Jamek station and take the LRT home, and I daresay I got home before those who decided to wait for the bus.

9. Medical amenities. After the 7th km, I developed a little bit of a cramp on my left calf, so when I passed the medic along the route, I asked for some spray. But I was told it was finished. After that, every single medic I passed (I think there were more than ten, I lost count after that), EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM said the spray 'sudah habis'. What sorcery is this?!?! At last, after much exasperation, I asked them how come the spray finished so early? I was told they were only given one can. ONE CAN?? Are you kidding me? Only one can per medic station? Dear darlings, it is a run, people are bound to develop cramps. If you can't supply sprays cos they're too expensive, then give la counterpain or other cheaper stuff. ESPECIALLY towards the end. I couldn't even run anymore after that cos my leg cramps will hurt everytime I start running.

10. BAGGAGE SYSTEM. This one takes the cake. I mean, really. During the start of the run, we missed the flag off because we were still lining up to put our baggage in the baggage trucks (baggage carts, more like). In the end, everything became chaotic and people started just shoving their bags into the carts until even the volunteers had to raise their voice to stop them from pushing and shoving. But why is it so? I wonder. The baggage system is not systematic at all. The crew just takes the bag, labels them, and throw it into the cart -.-" Oh and shall I say that, there were only four carts to cater to the whole run. 15k participants, and only 4 baggage trucks.

Oh look! beg lelong -.-" oh and did I mention they were throwing bags every which way as well?

After the run, we waited three hours just to get our bags back. We finished the race at 730pm, but only got home at 11pm, because there was so much trouble finding our bags. Some people say we should travel light, and not leave bags with the baggage counter. BUT why is Standard Chartered able to have such an organised system of baggage handling and you are not? This is not your first year of organising a run. You should have prepared more trucks, and a more organised system of handling the bags, not just chucking it into the truck as you see fit. Don't give the excuse that you were unprepared for this. You knew beforehand that there are gonna be 15k runners, and yet you only prepared 4 miniscule baggage trucks. How can you not foresee that there will be a mess? Do you think only 200 people will leave their bags? Oh and don't get me started on the profanities the crew started yelling to the participants -.-"

Too much to handle, until they even left it on top of the truck

So there you have it folks, the top 10 reasons why this year's Nike Run was such a disaster.

Dear Nike, I do not hold this against you, as I know that an event this size is bound to run into some sort of difficulty at some point, but please, I implore you, look into the flaws that happened this year (and you have many, these are a mere 10 things), and improve it for next year. I would most definitely join the run again next year, but if you are still gonna have that crappy bag handling system, then Imma just gonna go home and save myself the trouble (even if I'm travelling light).


michleong said...

Okay....I heard about the bad stuff but didn't know it was THIS bad. Sounds like a pretty management this time around because last year there were not many complains about their Nike Run. Sounds like they've collected hell lots of $$ from the participants but not provide a better pre, during and post running experience to the participants (interested one that is).

missyblurkit said...

Much as I enjoy running...this was perhaps one of the worst runs I had. After the 9km mark and perhaps the last water point, I think we all had the potential of being road kill.

Sadly I think many of the participants lacked run ethics. Walking on the right side of the lane? Holding hands or waist while "walking"? Participating in such events as part of the date is fine but please stay off teh right lane. There are those of us who want to run and not have to zig zag amongst the walking dating human obstacles.

You're spot on on medical. I had a lil cramp on my left feet 800 before finish line. Zero medics around!

And to end...waiting a good 5 minutes to cross the finish line was crazy...absolutely insane. sigh...

Tammy said...

baggage system looks like HELL ON A RUNAWAY?!

Sherry Go Sharing said...

Wah so bad, why need give them the bags? Carry self cannot meh?

choulyin.tan said...

yeaps...the goodies are ok la, but they need to step up their organising

I know right! Medical is something you cannot compromise on..and yet Nike somehow managed that feat

haha yea you could say that :p

yea, I wanted to run with my bag, but my friend wanted to keep it, so I teman him lo...didn't know it would turn out like this :(

Unknown said...

such a shame. Shame. Shame on Malaysian....... I think it's the attitude la... ><

Hilda Milda™ said...

I didn't know about all these until I read your blog, wow it's really ten times worse than SCKLM! :O Speechless.

Xue Ren said...

yeah, my sis went to Nike run and waited for the bags for like 3 hours too! :(

Connie Lam said...

Wow that were really bad. So I should feel better that I didn't manage to register myself to join the run -.- Hopefully the coming Allianz penang bridge international marathon wont have such problems -.-

FurFer said...

Sham on them. I thought the management for Nike is as good as Standard Chartered. Pttf