Friday, June 4, 2010

Face/Off

Still remember the 1997 John Woo film about an FBI agent (John Travolta) and a terrorist (Nicholas Cage) which are sworn enemies who assume the physical appearance of one another?

This entry is not about that financially successful movie but about two of my running buddies, Jake and Enzo, that faced off last Sunday on a 10k race route

Race results are out and here's their official times
Jake -- 01:01:18 (gun time); 01:01:11 (chip time)
Enzo  -- 01:01:46 (gun time); 00:59:25 (chip time)

For podium finishes, race organizers follow the gun time which is why the reason that all elite athletes, varsity runners, Kenyans, Olympians, and other competitive runners all squirm their way nearest to the starting line.  Their goal is to minimize the difference between their gun time with their chip time.  On my last run I was in the middle of the pack and it took me more than 40 seconds before I finally crossed the starting line

Chip time is the overall time spent when you crossed the start and finish line where we would normally flag as our PR (personal record)/PB (personal best).  I do not want to take into account the 40 seconds that I lost because of the sheer number of racers

The race results of my buddies has clearly shown that Enzo won between the two and he was ahead by 1 minute and 46 seconds.  This is a distance of roughly 288 meters.  How did I got this number?
I took Jake's chip time and converted it to seconds then I divided this number to 10,000 (equivalent of 10km in meters) to get the average number of seconds needed to complete 1 meter.  Then I used the length of time that Enzo was ahead as a numerator to obtain the number of meters between them

1 hr 1 min 11 seconds = 3671 seconds / 10,000 = 0.3671 sec/m
106 seconds / 0.3671 = 288.7497 meters

Now Jake has sworn that he will train harder and hit a sub55 on his next 10km race before he commits himself training again for his upcoming full mary (42km) on Singapore Marathon (December)

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