Jody O’Dea, Head of Hanoi Red River Runners, and David Shin, Race Director of Sporting Republic, share tips for the upcoming Hanoi Half Marathon on December 10
Sporting Republic is a Hong Kong-based company that organized, amongst others in the past, the HCMC SKYRUN at the Bitexco Financial Tower last month and the Hanoi Half Marathon next month, what does Sporting Republic hope to achieve from these events and why choose Vietnam to hold them?
David: Running fever is sweeping across Vietnam. The emergence of these types of events are symbols of the growth of the country and the middle class. Hanoi is one of the fastest growing cities in the world and developments of running events like the Hanoi Half Marathon is emblematic of Vietnam’s emergence.
Running is a mass sport, and the people who are engaged come from various backgrounds. For now, we’re just happy to be part of this development and promote a healthy lifestyle and fitness amongst the local and international community.
Why did you choose Ciputra to have the marathon?
Jody: Ciputra have hosted all our previous half marathons (10 in total!) and have been our partner since the beginning. Ciputra Estate is perfect for running with wide open avenues and minimal traffic, and they have always encouraged and supported Red River Runner’s events over the years. The opening of the Ciputra Club two years ago took our event to the next level giving us access to all their excellent facilities and making the race day experience professional and with a great atmosphere.
David: The Hanoi Half Marathon will be another great event for Hanoi and the community. The 21km race, in particular, will allow participants to enjoy some of the best of what Hanoi has to offer– a scenic route along West Lake.
How many participants are you expecting?
Jody: About 1,000 participants, including both locals and foreigners, are expected to take part in this historic event. They will have the option of running one of five race distances: the featured race, a 21km Half Marathon, or two shorter races, a 10km, 5km, 3km and 800m kids sprint.
What training advice (leading up the race and on the day of) can you give the runners?
Jody: Participants can join one of our upcoming training runs which will take place on November 4 and 25 where our elite runners will be available to offer advice on pace and race strategy. On the day, it’s important not to get caught up in the excitement of the race and start too fast. Stay focused, stay hydrated and remember to enjoy yourself.
Any tips about the race courses runners should know? Bumps or hidden turns they should know about?
Jody: Half marathon participants need to be wary of the pedestrian bridge over Vo Chi Cong highway—we call it the stairway to hell! Otherwise, just be sure to follow the directions of our course volunteers and remember that the runner next to you might be running a different distance to you… so don’t just follow them!
Will the marathon still go on if it rains?
Jody: Yes indeed, the race will take place regardless of the weather, luckily December is one of Hanoi’s cool and sunny times so we are hopeful of perfect race conditions.
Are there plans to hold more events like this in Vietnam next year?
Jody: The race calendar in Vietnam is looking busier every year due to the growing popularity of running in Vietnam and the increased demand for high-quality race experiences. We’ll continue to organize this event for many years to come and, hopefully, this can become one of the ‘must-do’ events on the Vietnam running calendar.
We are pleased to be partnering with Sporting Republic for the first time as we look to grow the scale of the event significantly in the near future. The buzz around the race is being felt within the sporting community. We are anticipating a sell-out and encourage runners to sign up now so they don’t miss the chance to be a part of the incredible celebration. To register and more info on the Hanoi Half Marathon, visit sportingrepublic.com/hanoihalfmarathon.
Images Provided by Sporting Republic