- Category: News
- Published: Thursday, 10 August 2017 15:23
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ROMPIN: The diversity of flora and fauna in Pulau Tioman is once again the centre of most challenges in this year’s Sultan Ahmad Shah Tioman International Challenge (Sastiec).
The 10th edition of the race saw the most number of participants, with 183 runners taking on the longest route of its kind at 50km.
The task of climbing Gunung Kajang on the island really tested the participants’ mental and physical fitness and they admitted it was the toughest race they ever took part in.
Event director Col Datuk Thong Kok Seng said the world class full marathon’s gruelling challenges had however not jeopardised the purpose of the event in promoting the flora and fauna of the island.
“The challenges we have in this event have in fact attracted an increasing number of participants since its inception in 2008.
In that year, only 80 runners took part but the number kept on increasing yearly.
“Despite the longest distance this year, we received the most number of participants, proving that the challenges are just a piece of cake for them. We started with a 35km distance in the beginning and the further the distance that we set, the more runners took part. This proves the event is successful,” he said.
Thong added that Pulau Tioman offers a nice place for every aspect of tourism.
“The runners do not come alone. They bring along their friends and relatives. I was told that the island is suitable for honeymooners, which is another niche market in the state’s tourism industry.
“This is win-win situation for everyone when people visit here throughout the year and the race is another pulling factor for tourist arrival,” he said.
Sastiec president Datuk Seri Tengku Kamarulzaman Sultan Abu Bakar said the event was very much attributed to the Pahang Ruler Sultan Ahmad Shah, who loves nature, adventure and outdoor activities.
Tengku Kamarulzaman said the inauguration was a resounding success and Sultan Ahmad Shah had said in his speech in 2008 that he would like to see the event being organised annually.
“In conjunction with Sultan Ahmad Shah’s 80th birthday in 2011, we planned a special route to take participants to an idyllic village on the southern corner of Tioman called Kampung Nipah. It is here that the late Sultan Abu Bakar was said to have resided in the old days during his visits to Tioman.
“As years passed, the event focused on testing the participants’ endurance in traversing the jungle of Pulau Tioman. We have had themes such as ‘The Nature’s Race’, ‘The Culture Race’ where participants took part in local traditional games as well as the marathon, and in 2015, we named the event ‘Ruby Jubilee Race’ in honour of the sultan’s 40th year of reign as the Sultan of Pahang.
“For 2016, we designed a gruelling race called ‘The Adventure Race’ combining the four natural elements of Pulau Tioman, which are its white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, pristine mountain and rugged mountain terrain, to test the endurance of the runners.
Tengku Kamarulzaman said 2017 was a special milestone for the organiser of Sastiec as it was the 10th year since the race’s inception in 2008.
“It has been 10 challenging years since we organised the first ‘Toughest Adventure Race in South-East Asia’ and to commemorate this special event we named our anniversary race this year ‘The Race of the Decade’.
Tengku Kamarulzaman said the event’s objectives included the promotion and positioning of Pulau Tioman on the world’s eco-tourism map, develop public interest in eco-tourism, promote community-based eco-tourism and economic agenda in Pahang, increase public awareness on nature conservation and sustainable tourism and also promote extreme sports, traditional games and eco-challange activities.
In the international men’s category, the Kenyans grabbed all top 10 places with Kipchirchir Lel clocking 3:54.49 to be the champion while first runner-up David Kipsang clocked 4:20.03 and Elisha Kipratich Sawe clocked 4:38.22 to win the third place.
In the international ladies’ category, the Kenyans too were the top three winners.
Champion Valentine Jepkemoi Serem recorded a time of 5:52.18, followed by Rebecca Nakuma (6:20.20) as first runner-up and Irene Kemunto Mogaka (6:27.49) as third placed.
In the local men’s category, Mohd Athird Ismail (5:07.06), Mohd Azuan Asmuni (5:14.37) and Mohammad Affindi Nudin (5:27.15) were the first, second and third placed respectively.
In the local ladies’ category, Tahira Najmunissa Muhammad Zaid (6:23.00) from Kuala Kubu Bharu, was first placed followed by Foo Kam Miew (6:37.11) from Kuala Lumpur and Norhani Mohd Jaffar (6:53.45) from Selangor.
In the veteran men’s category, Saleh Abdullah (6:20.55), Rahmat Kasbon (7:11.35) and Ong Chi Lai (7:16.01) were the top three winners.
All prizes were presented by Tengku Kamarulzaman.
KUANTAN: A replacement for the Kuantan 2035 Local District Draft Plan has been unveiled and the public have one month to scrutinise it.
PLANMalaysia deputy director-general (planning) Rokibah Abdul Latif said the report will be displayed at the Kuantan Municipal Council (MPK) lobby and the PLANMalaysia@Pahang office at Kompleks Tun Razak, Indera Mahkota until Aug 10.
The replacement is for the first plan which was unveiled in 2015.
“The report can also be viewed at the PLANMalaysia and MPK websites,” she said at the launch of the draft plan viewing here.
Rokibah said the replacement was necessary considering the latest scenario, trends and pressures of development as well as the importance of state projects.
She said the replacement draft was made after taking into account the Government’s commitment at the national level and also the development of high impact projects such as the East Coast Rail Line, the new state administration centre in KotaSAS as well as the East Coast Economic Region master plan.
“The report explains in detail each component of proposed lot-based land use based on the development, analysis and projection cores that have been set according to five focus areas,” said Rokibah.
These focus areas are sustainable land development and disaster risk management, safe and inclusive community development, tourism and sustainable town design, economic, agro-based industries, forestry development and sustainable mining as well as effective administration.
Rokibah said five briefing sessions and a mobile counter will be set up during the publicity period at the Kuantan Urban Transformation Centre, the Balok, Gambang and Tanjung Lumpur public halls and the Sungai Lembing old theatre to get public feedback.
State Housing and Township Committee chairman Datuk Seri Wan Rosdy Wan Ismail said the publicity period is a platform for the public to give their views and suggestions before the draft is gazetted by the state government.
“If the public requests for an extension, we may consider it. What is important is for the people to really understand what we are planning,” he said.
Present at the launch were state secretary Datuk Seri Muhammad Safian Ismail and MPK president Datuk Fadzilla Salleh.
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