Adding 'black' humour to race

Adding 'black' humour to race

For Mr Francis Chia, the hardest part of The Straits Times' Run in the Park on Sunday was not enduring the 15km route.It was trying not to lose his "sword".

The 51-year-old IT consultant amused fellow runners by dressing up as the fictional vigilante Zorro, complete with the character's iconic black mask, hat, cape, sword and whip.

"I just wanted to contribute to the fun," he quipped. "When people see me, they laugh and forget any pain during the run. I like that I can make them happy."

Mr Chia bought most of his costume and props for about $200, and hand-made the letter "Z" for Zorro on his hat and belt buckle from gold construction paper.

Decked almost completely in black, he had to stop at every water point and pour water on himself to help cope with the heat.

Mr Chia's efforts turned him into something of a celebrity, with many runners jostling to take a photo with him after the run.

"He's very cute," said business owner Jann Chan, 54, who also took part in the 15km run. "But I pity him because it's so hot."

Also drawing attention to themselves with their neon yellow tops and bunches of brightly coloured helium balloons were the runners from the Rare Disorders Society (Singapore).

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