Writer Calvin Seak (left) with fellow Triathlete, Edwin Thiang.

When I heard that Freddie Ng would be holding his first Kerian Incredible Triathlon at Bukit Merah Lake Town resort, I signed up excitedly as I missed the hills so dearly!

The Bukit Merah hills were short and steep, it was the perfect setup for Langkawi’s 3 sisters hill simulation route in IRONMAN Malaysia.

Kerian Incredible Triathlon was very well organised and everyone could see that safety was the first priority for all the participants. For the swim, it was compulsory for all the participants to have a swim buoy with them at all times, so I brought along my ladybird buoy for the race.

 

Fellow training buddies from Rupert Chen’s RC Coaching

Coming out from the swim (Jack ah Beh)

On race morning, the air was buzzing with excitement. Every race is like a reunion of fellow Triathletes, some encouraging on newbies while sharing tips and words of wisdom.

I was eager to start my Sprint race – 750m swim in the Bukit Merah lake, killer punch 20km cycle on steep hills, ending with 5km run along palm oil plantations.

The swim course was well marked, with lots of marshalls on kayaks and the water was as calm as the pool waters that we train in. At the end of my 750m swim, a little effort was needed to get up the wooden platform. Best of all there were volunteers assisting us by holding on to our arms to get up onto the wooden platform.

Zooming down the Bukit Merah steep hills.

The Transition area was pretty straightforward and it made my day when supporters cheered for every participant along the way.

Upon mounting on my bicycle at the start, I knew the steep hill was ahead, so I switched on to a lighter gear and kept spinning my legs.

The hills were long and steep gradients, making us grind through the uphills and giving us thrilling downhills on high speed and sharp switchbacks. Us Sprint participants only had to do one loop, but the ones in the Olympic Distance category had to repeat this twice!

Everything went smoothly as Freddie and his team left BRIGHT markers and volunteers too shouted for potholes and sharp bends to ensure everyone’s safety! Traffic was controlled really well on the bike course and I felt safe, there were volunteers, police and Rela personnel along the whole bike course which was pretty straight forward.

My pride and joy, Trek Speed Concept Project One

On to the run course, it was just as straight forward and at every junction there would be volunteers to guide us to the right path. Water stations had plenty of water and isotonic drinks.

I knew the run would be short and speedy, so I switched on the nitros and went on full gaz!

Upon finishing the race, I was pleased to finish second in my age category and third overall in the Sprint race. Also had the fastest bike split for the race and could never ask for a better race.

I’ll definitely encourage everyone and newbies to participate in Freddie Ng’s races in the near future, well organised and a whole lot of fun. The Cendol and Apam Balik at the finish line was pure bonus!

On the podium securing 2nd place in my age category and 3rd overall in the Sprint race. (Jack ah Beh)

A small training block and build up to my fitness, I am looking forward to race in the IRONMAN Langkawi on the 17th of November 2018!

View more photos on Tough Asia’s Facebook album here: Part 1 | Part 2

More about the author

Calvin Seak began cycling because he wanted to join Triathlon races and is now the ambassador for Trek Bikes Malaysia. Cycling has brought him to many wonderful places that he has never imagined and every weekend, he looks forward to explore new routes on his two wheels!