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When most people decides to sleep in on a weekend, almost 250 racers decided to get out of bed and make the best of a sunny Saturday morning and compete to earn the title "duathlete".
The first leg of the Malakoff University Duathlon Series (MUDS) 2012 kick-started today at Universiti Malaya (UM) with athletes competing in the run-bike-run multi-sports event. Sponsored by Malakoff Corporation Berhad (Malakoff), the duathlon is aimed at boosting the local “Duathlete Community” and drumming up further interest in the sport.
Organised for the sixth time, MUDS is a key component of Malakoff’s flagship Corporate Social Responsibility platform – the Malakoff Community Partnerships. Since its inception in 2003, MUDS has steadily gained popularity from 321 participants in the inaugural race, to over 600 last year.
Speaking at the event, Yusop Rashid, Head of Corporate Affairs and Communications of Malakoff said, “Malakoff is pleased with today’s turnout as it is a clear indication of the growing popularity of this multi-sports event within the local duathlete community. This is in fact the main objective of organising the Malakoff University Duathlon Series – to boost the Duathlete Community in Malaysia.”
“The continuous support from the participants is a motivation for Malakoff to continue championing MUDS to provide non-professionals, amateurs and beginners an opportunity to experience the thrill of competing and completing a duathlon,” he added.
The 3.5km Run - 11.4km Bike - 3.5km Run marshalled race saw athletes competing in four categories of University Category (Men’s & Women’s), the Open Category (Men’s & Women’s), the Team Relay Category (Men’s & Mixed) and the Media Category (Men’s & Women’s).
The winners of the University Category were Lim Shimri from Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia (UPNM) and Lydia Tan Sheh Ai Queenstown Resort College for Men’s and Women’s University Category respectively, while Rikigoro Shinozuka won the Men’s Open and Nazihah Abdul Ghani stood top in the Women’s Open category.
The Mens’ Team Relay Category saw Abdul Mustaqim Abdul Hadi and his teammates claiming the top spot with Muhammad Faiz Solehan and team winning the Mixed Relay. The top five winners in each individual category and the top three winners in the team category were awarded placing medals in recognition of their efforts.
Delighted with his victory in the Men’s University Category, Lim Shimri said, “Participating in MUDS has made me realized that we can be a winner as long as we train hard and challenge ourselves. It doesn’t matter if you are a seasoned athlete or just a beginner.”
“My win in this year’s MUDS serves as an inspiration for me to train even harder and to hopefully take on the challenge in Powerman Malaysia, a premier duathlon championship, which is also sponsored by Malakoff,” he added.
Racing for fifth time, the winner of Women’s University Category, Lydia Tan Shenh Ai expressed, “I am very happy to win this year’s MUDS as it proves that all my training has finally paid-off. I look forward to participating again next year and improve my personal record.”
MUDS is also a favourite among the local expatriate community. Damien Mac Cord from the United States of America who raced in the Open Category said, “This is the third time I’m joining MUDS. I enjoy MUDS because not only is it a challenging multi-sports, it also gave me the opportunity to get to know fellow athletes of different background who share the same passion as I do.”
The second round of MUDS will take place on 19 May 2012 at Universiti Putra Malaysia, while the grand finale will be held 26 May 2012 at Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia.
Apart from awarding placing medals to top winners in each category, Malakoff will also be awarding trophies to the university with the highest participation in the three legs (Top University Trophy) and to the university with the best results throughout the series (Best University Trophy).
For the full race results at UM as well as for details on the second leg and finale of MUDS, please visit http://www.duathlonseries.com.my