The long-anticipated inaugural multisport IRONMAN 70.3 series event proved to be an overwhelming success, as the Desaru Coast Multisport Festival (DCMF) witnessed 2,062 participants over the weekend.
The Desaru Coast Multisport Festival was the first of its kind in Malaysia, where the weekend featured iconic endurance sports events by the IRONMAN Group. This included the IRONMAN 70.3, 5150 Triathlon series, IRONKIDS, and the SPRINT distance races.
The Desaru Coast MultisportFestival was also a prime example of how people globally missed live-action sports after a two-year absence due to the pandemic, with athletes from all walks of life converging at the idyllic getaway destination.
The festival saw high international participation from up to 50 countries. Malaysians amounted to 47.5% of the total participation, with 980 athletes from all over the country descending to DCMF over the weekend.
Teh Kuok Yuen finished as the top male Malaysian as he clocked 4:53:20 past the finish line. The 35-year-old engineer by profession was a resilient force as he battled leg cramps to finish as the top local performer.
“I have done quite a few IRONMAN 70.3 races, but this is the hardest. My legs were cramping up at the end, but thankfully I pushed through. I want to thank the organizers for a great race. Sometimes it’s not about achieving the target, but how you handle the tough days,” he said.
Serena Yang claimed the top Malaysian female finisher prize with a time of 5:28:57, achieving her target of finishing below six hours.
“My target was to finish at sub-six-hour, and I achieved that. I had practiced for three to four months for this race. I’m a mother of two, so my training time is limited! I want to thank my Mom for taking care of my kids, and my husband for coaching me,” said Serena, who competed at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Held for the first time in Malaysia, the 5150 Triathlon series saw over 350 athletes, where athletes took on a 1.5km swim, a 40km bike ride, and a 10km run to complete the course.
The Sprint triathlon saw more than 100 athletes complete a 750-meter swim, 20km bike ride and ended with a 5km run.