$20 off for 2014 race fee for glitch-hit 21km SCMS runners

$20 off for 2014 race fee for glitch-hit 21km SCMS runners

SINGAPORE- Half-marathon runners affected by a technical glitch at the Dec 1 Standard Chartered Marathon Singapore (SCMS) finally have something to cheer about.

In an official statement published on the SCMS website yesterday, event organiser Spectrum Worldwide offered a $20 non-transferable discount on SCMS 2014 registration fees to these affected runners "as an expression of (its) goodwill and regret".

While the technical glitch affected 3,782 runners in total, organisers clarified that only half-marathon runners affected by a hitch at the start point are entitled to the discount.

This, after investigations showed that both primary and back-up timing mats at the half-marathon start point malfunctioned during a four-minute period. It resulted in the disqualification of some 1,300 half-marathon participants. They were reinstated later, but have yet to receive accurate net timings.

As such, on top of the discount, Spectrum Worldwide said it would contact the affected runners individually to rectify their net timings with a closer estimate, one based on the known time that the fault occurred.

The statement ruled out human, deployment, and maintenance issues as the cause of the glitch.

Spectrum Worldwide added that disqualification numbers are now at a level consistent with previous years' editions, although the company will waive the $50 fee for those who would like to appeal against their disqualifications.

Derek Li, who finished sixth but was initially disqualified, said: "The discount and the calling of affected runners individually are nice gestures. That being said, for people who are serious about taking part, the discount won't really matter.

"I've put the whole saga behind me. I just hope next year's run will be error-free."

Alex Ong, runner-up in the Singapore men's category agreed, saying: "The organisers have done a good job in admitting their mistake, and now, with the discounts and calling of affected runners.

"Overall they've been quick to right their wrongs. I hope they take all feedback on board, learn from their mistakes, and organise a better race next year."

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