Off to a Running Start!

Over 1,200 people took to the trails at the inaugural MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50 International runners clear up with top prizes as Singapore becomes a racing hotspot

25 May 2015

Today, the first ever MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50 ultra marathon saw more than 1,200 runners from around the world compete on one of Singapore's most beautiful race routes covering 10km, 21km and 50km distances. The race covered nature trails including the Green Corridor, MacRitchie Reservoir Park and even the new bridge on the Durian Loop. 

Proving that age is just a number, more than one in 10 runners were in the over-50 age category, including Singaporean, Mr Chan Meng Hui, an 85 year-old runner who has completed 100 marathons over the last 30 years all across the globe. The most senior participant in the MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50, Mr Chan ran the 10km leg in 2:21:06.

Mr Chan commented: "I started running at age of 56 as I wanted to look after my health. I've seen a lot of seniors end up in wheelchairs and I didn't want to end up that way. I was born and raised around the MacRitchie area, so I regularly run around the reservoir to keep fit."

Guest-of-Honour and Tampines GRC Member of Parliament, Mr Baey Yam Keng flagged off the 10km race at 7am today and joined runners in the same leg.

The MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50 drew participants from all over the world, including elite runners such as Salameh Al Aqra (Jordan), Marie McNaughton (Australia), Nora Senn (Switzerland) and Vanja Cnops (Belgium), alongside Singapore's very own ultra marathon runners Lexxus Tan, Thaddeus Lawrence, and Paviter Singh.

Overall winners for the event:

Race Category Winner (Men) Time Winner (Women) Time Prize
50km Jackson Chirchi, Kenya 3:55:44 Rebecca Nakuwa, Kenya 4:50:39 $1,750
10km Stephen Mung'athen Nkubitu, Kenya 1:15:24 Esther Wammui Karimi, Kenya 1:30:40 $1,250
10km Jit Bahadur Gaha, Nepal 0:42:16 Gladys Koech, Kenya 0:50:12 $300

Full race times can be viewed at

Jackson Chirchi, Kenya, winner of the men's 50km, commented, "I've raced all over the world, and three times in Singapore, but this is the first 50km I've ever run. It's very hard - not easy at all. I found the first 5-20km and the last 10km the toughest to get through."

Rebecca Nakuwa, Kenya, winner of the women's 50km, commented, "The race was hard and complicated because I didn't know the route very well, but I enjoyed it very much, it was in nature and there was some shade. This is my first time running 50km, I usually run 10km, 21km so it feels good to complete the 50km in a good time and be the fastest in my category. I wish to come back to Singapore again to compete."

The fastest Singapore male in the 50km was Rio Elijah Chua (4 hours 47 minutes 49 seconds) while the second fastest Singapore male was Alex Ang (5 hours 2 minutes and 17 seconds). Fastest Singapore female in the 50km was Jasmine Goh (5 hours 24 minutes and 12 seconds) while the second fastest was Seivland Poh (5 hours 53 minutes 40 seconds). 

Michael Maddess, Director of Action Asia Events commented: "The Singapore edition of the MSIG Action Asia 50 series took off to a really great start. We're extremely grateful to NParks for allowing us to use some of Singapore's most beautiful green areas, and ensuring that repairs on Kg Chantek Bridge were completed in time for the race. This really helped us to give our runners a great race route."

To help preserve the historical route, the MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50 operated a strict No Cup Policy as event organisers encouraged participants to bring their own refillable hydration packs and try to minimise waste. The organisers also clamped down with race regulations where runners would be disqualified if they are found to have thrown rubbish on the track. These measures helped to save over 6,000 paper cups and thousands of plastic bottles that could end up in the landfill sites. 

oldest Runner

The oldest runner at MSIG Singapore Action Asia 50, Mr Chan Meng Hui, 85, from Singapore completes the 10km.

Baey Yam Keng

Left to right: MP Baey Yam Keng; Jit Bahadur Gana; Gunung Sajam; Raj Manoj; Kumar Phakami; Michael Gourlay, CEO of MSIG.

Jackson Chirchir

Jackson Chirchir, winner of the men’s 50km, stands victorious after completing his first 50km marathon.

About MSIG Insurance

MSIG Insurance (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. ("MSIG Singapore"), a member of the MS&AD Insurance Group, is one of Singapore's leading general insurers. With a local presence of over 100 years, MSIG Singapore offers an extensive range of insurance solutions for personal and commercial risk protection, enabling the security and safety of individuals and businesses. Wholly owned by MSIG Holdings (Asia) Pte. Ltd., MSIG Singapore holds an A+/Stable financial rating by Standard & Poor's. 

About Action Asia Events

Action Asia Events is the operational arm of the premier adventure racing series in Asia, Action Asia Challenge with responsibilities to plan and manage the Action Asia Challenge series of races. These responsibilities range from selection of the course venue, dates and race format to raising the funds essential to run the race as well as liaising with the Hong Kong registered charitable section of the Challenge, Action Asia Foundation, to determine fund raising activities associated with the Challenge. 

The event could not happen without the generous support of MSIG our presenting sponsor and the supporting partners Salomon, RunSociety, ActionX Store, Suunto, Tailwind Nutrition Asia, Under Armour, YourSingapore, Kiehl's, Nathan Sports, OL&N, and the Action Asia Foundation.

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