Within a span of less than four months, Singapore’s top marathoner Soh Rui Yong’s 2.4km national best time of 6min 53.18sec was broken by national athlete Jeevaneesh Soundararajah’s new national best time of 6min 52.97sec at the Pocari Sweat Run held on 8 Jan 2022.
The two athletes who are currently studying abroad are looking to break the 2.4km national best yet again and will be flying back to Singapore to race at the Pocari Run Sweat Run 2022 to be held on 20 Aug 2022 in the hope of clocking Singapore’s first ever sub 6:50 race.
Since setting the 2.4km record in January, Soundararajah has gone on to improve his timings with personal bests of 2min 00.30s for 800m, 4min 00.19s for 1500m, 8min 42s for 3000m and 32mins 24s at recent Gold Coast 10km.
He has also represented Singapore at the Hanoi 2021 SEA Games.
Currently pursuing Masters of Engineering Management at University of Melbourne, Soundararajah is still looking to improve on his mark and defend his title of Singapore’s fastest 2.4km runner.
“I’m looking forward towards racing 2.4km again and hope to improve on the time.
“I hope to see more Singaporeans taking part and challenging themselves in the upcoming edition and as per my pledge, I’ll be supporting cash prize of $800 for every Singaporean Female runner who can run 2.4km under 8mins for this edition”
Meanwhile, Soh, who holds four running national records has set a new 10,000m national record in June 2022 (31min 12.05sec) whilst finishing his first year of law school in London.
“The Pocari Sweat 2.4km is a great opportunity to challenge the limits of our minds and bodies.
“After becoming the first man the break 7 minutes for 2.4km last year, I’m setting a more ambitious goal this time – to run the first sub 6:50 2.4km in Singapore history.”
Taking part in the female 2.4km challenge is Goh Chui Ling, who now holds national records in six events, recently made a big breakthrough and set the national women’s 1500m record by more than 5 seconds with a time of 4min 27.26sec (July 16).
She also holds the national bests in 2.4km, 5km road, 10km road, and was a member of the 4x400m mixed and 4x400m women’s relay teams that set the current national records.
Goh will be flying in from overseas and looks to break her 2.4km national best timing of 7min 58.50sec.
“I am excited to attempt getting under my 2.4km national best.
“It has been a fruitful season for me thus far, and I am keen to see how much further we can together raise the standard of 2.4km in Singapore.
“If 2.4km is our national distance, let’s make it good!”
Regarding the 2.4km challenge at this year’s Pocari Sweat Run, Joshua Lee, POCARI SWEAT Business Manager (Nutraceuticals), said, “We hope the run serves as a platform to motivate Singaporeans to aim higher for better health.
“We have also expanded the search for promising 2.4km runners by conducting a selection trial open to the public on 23 Jul 2022. The fastest male and female runners from this trial will compete in the 2.4km national best break attempt on 20 Aug 2022 at the Pocari Sweat Run.”
All runners who register for the on-ground race happening on 20 and 21 August 2022 at Kallang Practice Track will not only receive their official 2.4km timing by Singapore Athletics but also qualify for the Singaporean Male Under 7-minute challenge (Cash prize pool SGD $1,500 split between eligible runners) and Singaporean Female Under 8-minute challenge (Cash prize pool SGD $2,800 split between eligible runners).
PHOTOS: POCARI SWEAT