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Record-breaking Year at the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail 2023: Jack Oh, Saddam Pittli

Images Source: (L) Kailas Malaysia Instagram, and (R) Muhammad Ammar Hurairah’s Facebook

The Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail 2023 concluded with resounding success, marking a record-breaking year for the renowned trail running event. Held from 2 June to 4 June 2023, the race attracted approximately 900 participants from around the globe, including Malaysia, Singapore, China, the Philippines, France, and The Netherlands.

This year’s edition of the race showcased extraordinary achievements and exceptional athleticism, with runners pushing their limits to reach new milestones. The event featured four categories, namely the 100-mile, 100km, 50km, and 25km races. Among the standout performances were those of Team Kailas’ Oh Jin Heng, Jack and Team DEVER Malaysia’s Mohd Saddam bin Mohd Pittli.

In the highly challenging 100-mile category, Jack etched his name in the annals of the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail history. Displaying remarkable determination and stamina, he shattered the previous year’s record set by Shamsul Kamal Mohamad Amierul Amin by an impressive 41 minutes. Jack crossed the finish line in a phenomenal time of 27:03:38, solidifying his position as a true trailblazer in the sport.

Image Source: Shutter Sports

“First of all, I am thrilled to participate in the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail 2023. The trail offers a truly unique experience, especially with its two kilometer river crossing, which happened twice, and the opportunity to explore a stunning cave with breathtaking formations,” said Jack Oh, who is also the captain of Team Kailas.

“The majority of the route consists of runnable paths that take you through farms, roads, and plenty of jungle. This combination offers a great challenge for your fitness level. Initially, I was concerned that the route might be confusing based on the GPX, but the markers along the trail are fantastic and very clear.”

“Additionally, the crew is extremely friendly. This race is well-organised, thanks to the efforts of a great team working behind the scenes. I highly recommend this trail to adventure seekers who want to add 100 miles to their accomplishments. With proper training, it is definitely an achievable goal. For other adventurers, there are alternative distance options to consider as well. Starting with a 100-mile race here could serve as a fantastic entry point in the local racing scene.”

Not to be outdone, the 25km category witnessed an astonishing feat by Mohd Saddam bin Mohd Pittli, or better known as Saddam Pittli, from Team DEVER Malaysia. Despite recovering from a meniscus injury two weeks before the race, Saddam broke his own previous year’s record by an astounding 19 minutes, leaving spectators in awe of his abilities. He completed the race in a remarkable time of 1:57:37, showcasing his dedication and mastery of the trail.

“I am extremely delighted with my decision this time around. Participating for the second time in the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail Run 2023, I am thrilled to have achieved first place last year with a remarkable time of 2:17:38,” said Saddam.

He added that the race route this year remains 99% identical to the 2022 edition.” Once again, I secured the top position and even improved upon my previous record, crossing the finish line in an impressive 1:57:37. I express my gratitude to Dever Malaysia for providing me with the necessary energy during the race, as a single Dever Energy Gel sustained me until the final stretch.”

“Speaking of the course, I am genuinely satisfied. The trail offers a delightful variety of terrains, including traversing rivers, meandering through oil palm plantations, navigating village roads, and the exhilarating highlight of venturing into a cave – a unique feature absent in other events. Additionally, the favorable weather greatly complemented the entirety of the race. With enthusiasm, I eagerly look forward to participating in this event once again next year, extending my appreciation to all the organizers involved.”

The Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail has become a premier trail running event, attracting both seasoned athletes and enthusiastic amateurs alike. The breathtaking backdrop of the Kg Merapoh rainforest provided a challenging yet stunning terrain for participants to conquer. The event’s international appeal was evident as runners from various countries flocked to test their mettle and experience the unparalleled beauty of the Pahang rainforest.

Husnan Husin, the founder of the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail, expressed his joy and pride in witnessing the remarkable performances and the growth of the event. He said, “We are thrilled to see the Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail achieve new heights this year. It is truly gratifying to witness the unwavering passion and dedication of our participants as they conquer the challenging trails. This event embodies the spirit of adventure and highlights the importance of environmental conservation. We look forward to welcoming even more runners in the future and continuing to promote the beauty of the Merapoh rainforest.”

Full results available here.

The Kailas Merapoh Rainforest Trail 2023 is organised by Mt Tahan Ventures, sponsored by Kailas Malaysia, with the event being presented by The Boom Beverage and DEVER Malaysia.