Law Society Virtual Cross Country 2020
With the COVID-19 pandemic in full swing this year, it was a huge disappointment that our Annual Cross Country Run/Race could not take place as we would have liked. This event has become a firm fixture on Law Society’s annual calendar and has also seen good participation from the fraternity in recent years. However, with virtual runs gaining in popularity, we chose to push on and organise this year’s run as a virtual event.
This year’s virtual run was organised with the objective of getting more of us in the legal fraternity into the sport of running. Participation in the non-competitive 5km and 10km categories was thus opened to all staff working in law firms including non-lawyers. In-house counsel were also eligible to participate. The competitive team category was limited to legally qualified persons and fashioned as a challenging 42km marathon relay run by a team of six runners.
With no official start line or pre-assigned run route, this year’s virtual run offered runners much appeal and flexibility. The virtual run in turn attracted a strong showing with over 200 runners taking part in both the competitive and non-competitive categories. The competitive team category notably also included a team of runners from the Supreme Court.
Runners were able to clock their runs at any time on the race weekend held between Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 September 2020. Runners were required to use the Strava Running App to record their runs and had to upload screenshots of their run details on a dedicated race platform. Many runners clocked their runs despite the continuous and heavy rain that persisted over the run weekend. All finishers received exclusive finisher pack entitlements which included a keepsake finisher medal and t-shirt.
Law Society also managed to secure a sponsorship deal with Ultimate Performance who contributed, amongst other things, 18 cookbooks to the prize winners in the competitive team category. In addition, Ultimate Performance shared fitness and running related articles to all participants in the lead up to race weekend.
Overall, the competitive team category was hotly contested with many teams posting strong timings. Teams from Rajah & Tann put up a particularly strong show with their two teams finishing in podium positions. They emerged victorious and also placed third. Rajah & Tann have now won the Team Challenge Shield two years in a row. Allen & Gledhill Team 1 put up a strong fight for the top spot but eventually placed second.
Details of the finisher timings of the top three teams are set out below:
|Team Name||Runner’s Name||Distance||Elapsed Time||Total Team Timing|
|Rajah & Tann Team 1||Bethel Chan||5km||00:26:43||03:07:46|
|Yau Yee Ming||7km||00:30:35|
|Allen & Gledhill Team 1||Chua Xinying||5km||00:27:52||03:19:41|
|Low Pei Lim||5km||00:29:18|
|Rajah & Tann Team 2||Cassmine Chew||5km||00:29:45||03:33:15|
|Low Weng Hong||7km||00:32:22|
|Lim Yam Poh||7km||00:36:04|
|Ho Zi Wei||9km||00:46:08|
A virtual prize ceremony for all prize winners was conducted on 23 October 2020 officiated by Law Society President, Gregory Vijayendran SC.
The success of the virtual run showed, to quote a participant, that COVID-19 or not “you simply cannot stop sport”!
With the success of the virtual run now behind us, we remain quietly hopeful that we will be able to revert to a physical on-site run in 2021. It may well be that next year’s edition of the run will be a mix of both virtual and physical runs to cater to all segments of runners.
Watch this space and until such time, stay safe and keep running!