What struck me from the trip was that, the organisation for IM MY was no where close, when compared to the effort that IM China put in.
COURSE & LOCAL POPULATION CONTROL:
During IM MY I saw a boy ram his motor-bike into a cyclist. Lots of kids were down right irritating, behaving like vultures to get our water bottles, safety glow sticks etc., verbally abusive, making sarcastic remarks, basically doing all kinds of stupid things.
For IM China the bike and run route is totally closed off to the general public. For the whole 90 km of the bike route there were uniformed personnel every few meters, even if there was not a soul around. They would just stand there. Around lunch time they would be eating their packed food (poor sods). There is a tape throughout the length of the route. No car or person is allowed through. There would be barricades even for dead ends.
The bike turnaround is through a lovely ancient village. The uniform people would be constantly giving instructions to the local population to keep clear. What do the local kids do??? They ALL cheer us. "How are you" they would say with a giggle.
The run was similar. We did not receive a single sarcastic remark. The run turnaround is through the heavily populated town. They cordoned off 90% of the width of the road for us, leaving a small little lane for thousands of local people. Uniformed people everywhere, making sure we the racers were alright. Can Bolehland do this?
The volunteers were from the local University (just like Bolehland). ALL of them were on the boil. From afar they would cheer us coming (this means there are alert and ready to serve). They would be clambering over each other to give us aid. They new basic English words, smiled and were quick and intelligent in their actions. They must have been preparing for quite a while, everything went like clockwork.
I know a lot of the volunteers at Bolehland were also good, but not all.
We sat on the floor at Bolehland and didn't know what they were saying.
At IM China, we all sat on comfortable banquet chairs. The audio and visual presentation was very clear. The briefing was carried out by illuminaries in the sport. Whit Raymond (we all know him, he is actually very good at what he does). Ian Adamson, the most successful adventure racer of all time (seven times World Champion). The great Jurgen Zack (who brought IM cycling to a different level in the nineties). We just couldn't avoid but give our most rapt attention.
I was the only one in the room. All twenty of them gave me their rapt attention and knew what they were doing. In Bolehland (they didn't even know what the person sitting next to them was doing)??
IM China, at a swank hotel. At Bolehland, one year the food was finished and I never went again. Lots of people at IM China got food poisoning though, not sure how that happened.
IM China - no deposit. A very reliable timing system. Flexible start time was implemented as the chips would automatically compute the nett time. At Putrajaya 70.3 - total chaos.
MURPHY REINSCHREIBER - MD WTC Asia Pacific (Future of IM MY):
I asked him, what he disclosed is too sensitive to write down. Ha ha , sorry.
I of course have always supported local races and will continue to do so. IM MY for eg has always been the most special day of the year for me. I wouldn't have a life without it.