Soh Rui Yong crushes own national marathon record, first S'porean eligible to qualify for Asian Games

Insane pace.

Belmont Lay | December 07, 2021, 03:19 AM

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Singapore champion marathoner Soh Rui Yong, 30, totally smashed his own men's national record on Dec. 5 at the Valencia Marathon.

He ran a time of 2 hours 22 minutes 59 seconds, beating his previous timing by some 43 seconds, which was set at the Seoul International Marathon in 2019.

Soh's previous best timing was 2:23:42.

With his Valencia timing, Soh has become the first Singaporean in history to make the qualifying time for the Asian Games marathon event.

First Singaporean to run marathon under 2 hours and 23 minutes

This is the first time a Singaporean has run a marathon under 2 hours and 23 minutes.

Difficult race

In a follow-up post on Dec. 6, Soh revealed that this was the hardest race he had to push himself as his "body started shutting down gradually after 25km".

He wrote: "We faced very strong winds in the second half of the race, and every time I started feeling sorry for myself, I reminded myself to focus on the process - focus on keeping up with the runners around me, stay as relaxed as possible, and just keep moving forward. The result would take care of itself."

In his earlier comments on Facebook, Soh said he decided to take up this race just six weeks before it took place, which gave him suboptimal time to train for it.

Qualifies for 2022 Asian Games

His feat makes him eligible to represent Singapore at the September 2022 Asian Games in Hangzhou.

The nomination standard timing for the Games is 2:23:42, which matches the timing of the sixth-placed runner at the 2018 Asian Games.

According to Singapore Athletics, the nomination standard timing for the Asian Games is 2:23:42, which was the timing the sixth-placed runner clocked at the 2018 edition.

Qualifies for 2022 SEA Games

Soh has also qualified for the marathon the 2022 SEA Games in Vietnam in May.

He previously won the men's marathon gold medals in 2015 and 2017.

He could have won the gold medal three times in a row, but was denied that opportunity as he was not selected by the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) to represent the country in 2019.

Qualifies for 10,000m competition

Soh is currently the national-record holder for the 5,000m, the 10,000m and the half marathon.

He earlier made the qualifying mark for the Asian Games men's 10,000m competition on Nov. 28.

His timing of 31 minutes 28.67 seconds at Singapore Athletics' All Comers 5 meet cleared the 31:44.14 qualification mark.

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