Jeevaneesh Soundararajah Finishes 1st In Pocari Sweat Run With 6:52.97 Timing

Singapore runner Soh Rui Yong is known for holding several national records and winning back-to-back SEA Games titles.

He also once held the fastest timing for a 2.4km run – 6 minutes 53.18 seconds.

We say “once held” because national runner Jeevaneesh Soundararajah has now beaten this timing with a run of 6 min 52.97 secs.

Soh Rui Yong (left), Jeevaneesh Soundararajah (centre) & Subas Gurung
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In doing so, he’s also set a new national record.

Pocari Sweat Run finally held on 8 Jan

Jeevaneesh achieved this feat during the Pocari Sweat Run, held on Saturday (8 Jan) night.

The 2.4km challenge was supposed to be held in October. But it was postponed to November and then to January due to Covid-19.

So when it finally took place at Home of Athletics, near the National Stadium, about 100-odd people turned up to watch the competition, reported The Straits Times (ST).

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In the end, 3 runners managed to break the 7-min mark:

  1. Jeevaneesh Soundararajah (6 min 52.97 secs)
  2. Subas Gurung (6 min 54.53 secs)
  3. Soh Rui Yong (6 min 55.50 secs)

Soh challenged

The challenge drew attention when Soh posted on Facebook in Sep 2021 about his timing, and it drew some comments that downplayed the accomplishment.

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Thus, he challenged anyone to run 2.4km below 7 minutes for the Pocari Sweat Run.

He even threw in a prize of $700 and 700 bottles of Pocari Sweat to any Singaporean who could do this.

Gurkha also took part

To make things more interesting, a Gurkha runner named Subas Gurung also accepted his invitation to participate.

Subas is no slouch – in Jul 2021, he set the Gurkha Contingent 2.4km record at 6 min 58 secs.

Gurkha 2.4km challengeSource

Thus, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) threw their support behind him for this challenge.

Jeevaneesh came out tops

In the end, it was 28-year-old Jeevaneesh who came out tops.

His timing beat Soh’s and marked a new national best in the 2.4km, ST reported.

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That means he also wins the $700 and 700 bottles of Pocari Sweat that Soh offered and other prizes from sponsors, including 700 packets of chicken rice.

Another Singaporean, Ethan Yan, came in 4th at 7 mins 09.09 secs.

Soh sends congratulations

Gracious despite coming in 3rd, Soh congratulated Jeevaneesh for setting a new Singapore best and breaking his record.

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Jeevaneesh is his training partner, so he told ST that he’s not sore over losing his record.

Yan (left), Jeevaneesh and Soh after training
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Soh also noted that Subas had set a new Gurkha record with his timing.

Though he also finished behind the Gurkha, Soh said that was why he was invited, adding,

We knew he could run below 7 (minutes) and we wanted to add a bit of competition because winning all the time is boring.

Kudos to all the participants

Kudos to the almost 400 participants for participating in the challenge despite the postponements and safe distancing measures.

It may sound like a cliché, but while only 3 men made it under 7 minutes, everyone’s a winner just for running.

After all, some friendly competition goes a long way to helping everyone improve and be at the top of their game.

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Featured image adapted from Soh Rui Yong on Facebook.