Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Brooks Hyperion Max - 500km A Long Term Review

505km in 81 runs since Feb 2023. The Hyperion Max has technically reached half life service.

This is the condition of the Max so far; While it did felt a little flatter due to mileage, foam integrity stays same without any obvious collapse, bouncy feel remain including the rocker toe off.

Some fatigue sign on the upper-foam near my small toe area, expected sole wear pattern due to my running (left side more heel compared to right, right side more midsole compared to left), some evidence of separation at the toe area between the traction pad which is not critical just glue.
Still look fresh

Forefoot minimal wear. Midfoot wearing out

Rocker sole uncompromised

Evidence that the rocker sole remains without the shoe flatting out

significant wear on the heel for my left shoe (pictured right) and significant wear on the outer right of my right shoe (pictured left)
Just put into consideration that the Max has been used 81 out of 86 days; 2xHM, many Speedwork, fartlek, and companion for easy run days. Travelled to US and Singapore with me, ran in those ground, and still very much in service.

I believe I found my long term trainer.

Get your Brooks Hyperion Max (or any Brooks) from and use SPEV02 on checkout for up to 55% discount, or use EEVANOFF25 at for up to 25%.

Buy Happy. Run Happy.

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Press Release: Desaru Coast Multisport Festival


 ·       More than 1,250 participants took part at this year’s edition

·       Harry Sinclair from Australia, finished as fastest overall male with a record time finish of 04:26:27

·       Siblings Daniel John Chen and Esther Joy Chen earn plaudits as top Malaysian finishers

·       Hong Kong’s Leanne Szeto takes home double wins as fastest female finisher at the 5150 and first finisher in her age-group at the IRONMAN 70.3

 Desaru, 14 May 2023: The increasing mass appeal of triathlon in Malaysia was showcased through the 2023 Desaru Coast Multisport Festival (DCMF), which witnessed over 1,250 participations from more than 50 countries who turned up over the weekend.

 The three-day Multisport Festival featured a host of events for beginners to seasoned athletes who participated in various events including the IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast, 5150 Triathlon Desaru Coast, Desaru Coast Sprint Triathlon and the IRONKIDS Desaru Coast.

This year’s event was made even more appealing by the fact that there were 55 qualification slots to the 2023 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Lahti, Finland (26 & 27 August 2023).

 25 of those slots were reserved specially for women, which highlighted the intent of the organizers to encourage participation amongst budding female triathletes.

 With so many world championships slots to offer, the IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast race on Sunday turned out to be a hugely engaging affair, with close to 900 participants starting out on a 1.9km swim from The Westin Desaru Coast Resort. They soon transitioned to a 90km bike course along the long straight, shaded roads before finishing off with a 21km run that culminated with the finish line back at The Westin Desaru Coast Resort.

 Malaysian siblings Daniel John Chen and Esther Joy Chen, who had only just recovered from a Covid-19 bout last week, dominated the course as the fastest Malaysians.

 Esther, the 2022 SEA Games Triathlete who beat her older brother with a finishing time of 05:03:09, admitted she didn’t know what to expect on her debut IRONMAN 70.3 race. “I couldn’t have asked for a better performance in my first race. I didn’t expect to do this well and to outrun my brother, especially after recovering from Covid-19 a week ago.”

 Daniel meanwhile finished with a time of 05:03:44.

 Harry Sinclair was crowned the overall fastest male finisher after the Australian turned in a strong and consistent performance to cross the finish line in first place under scorching conditions in Desaru. The 26-year-old said this was the most challenging race he’d ever endured.

 “This was a big mental game and I had to keep grinding. I am glad I got it done, this is the hardest race I have ever done. It was a tactical race, I was at the front and I had to keep pushing to get the win,” said Sinclair.

 Choo Ling Er meanwhile continued to make Malaysia her happy hunting ground. The Singaporean who won last year’ IRONMAN Langkawi 70.3 came out tops in Desaru as the fastest overall female finisher with a time of 04:49:52

“It was a good day for me. The plan was to swim steady, go hard on the bike and hold on to the run for the win. The weather was brutal, but I’m from Singapore and the last three weeks we have experienced a heatwave so it was a good acclimatization for me,” she said.

 The IRONMAN 70.3 Desaru Coast oldest female finisher was Michiyo Sekiya, 62, from Japan who finished at 07:12:13, whereas the oldest male finisher was Japan-based Michael Turoczy, 70, with a finish time of 07:54:25.

 Another notable participant included 2023 SEA Games Duathlete Tahira Najmunisaa who finished 3rd in her age group of 30-39 with a finish time of 05:31:11

 While the IRONMAN 70.3 delivered as the marquee event, the fringe events such as the Sprint Triathlon and 5150 Triathlon also proved a valuable experience for participants who wanted to get a first-hand IRONMAN experience.

 The Desaru Coast Sprint Triathlon started out with a 750m swim, before transitioning to a 20km bike and finishing off with a 5km run.

 The 5150 Triathlon Desaru Coast provided a more challenging experience with a 1.5km swim, before participants headed out on a 40km bike ride and completed with a 10km run.

 For this Olympic distance category, former national triathlete Thiang Choong Yoong finished as fastest overall male finisher and fastest Malaysian with a time of 02:19:28, while Australian Leanne Szeto finished as the top female by clocking 2:24:13. Effarezan Abdul Rahman meanwhile took home the honours as the fastest Malaysian female with a time of 3:13:50.

 The IRONKIDS also provided plenty of fun for more than 70 kids who participated, with a comprehensive crew of marshals and security personnel ensuring a safe zone for the children to swim, bike and run.

 This year’s Desaru Coast Multisport Festival also served up an array of side activities for the 1,200 plus participants to enjoy throughout the weekend. It included the Milo x Wavvy Hub Surfskate Clinic, 5 Club Speed Golf and the Desaru Coast Festival Village for the weekends’ festival go-ers.

 IRONMAN Asia Managing Director Jeff Edwards said yet another successful series in Desaru only highlights the significance of this venue as a pivotal race in the IRONMAN calendar.

 “The success of back-to-back IRONMAN races here in Desaru Coast shows what an important event this is not just for Asia, but globally as well. We saw a great representation from not just Malaysians, but also triathletes from all over the world and it is an indication this race will only grow bigger and more successful,” he said.

 Desaru Coast Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Roslina Arbak pledged the venue’s commitment to hosting the IRONMAN.

 "Desaru Coast had the immense pleasure to host this three-day international sporting gala at our integrated destination resort for the second time. It was heartening for us to watch guests enjoy not only the races but also the festivities and activities throughout the three days.

 “For this reason, we are determined to continue growing the festival. In continuing our commitment to host the Desaru Coast Multisport Festival presented by IRONMAN we hope that in the years to come Desaru Coast and the state of Johor become synonymous with the IRONMAN brand in the international circuit, making sports tourism a collective pillar of success for us,” said Chief Executive Officer, Roslina Arbak.

About The IRONMAN Group    

The IRONMAN Group operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® Virtual Racing™ (VR™) Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll® Running Series, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virtual Running™ Series, IRONKIDS®, World Triathlon Championship Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and City2Surf®, UTMB® World Series events including Tarawera Ultra and Ultra-Trail Australia™, Epic Series™ mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events

including Haute Route®, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world and provides more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Catering to the full athlete experience, the company portfolio also includes FulGaz, the most realistic indoor riding experience connected fitness application aimed at preparing athletes for real-world events. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance, a private, family-owned business. For more information, visit   

 About Advance   

Advance is a private, family-held business that owns and invests in companies across media, entertainment, technology, communications, education and other promising growth sectors. Our mission is to build the value of our companies over the long-term by fostering growth and innovation. Advance’s portfolio includes Condé Nast, Advance Local, Stage Entertainment, The IRONMAN Group, American City Business Journals, Leaders Group, Turnitin, 1010data and Pop. Together these operating companies employ more than 17,000 people in 29 countries. Advance is also among the largest shareholders in Charter Communications, Warner Bros. Discovery and Reddit. For more information visit 

About Desaru Coast

Desaru Coast is curated as a new destination resort in Malaysia with a portfolio of globally renowned hotels and resorts, namely Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast, The Westin Desaru Coast Resort, Anantara Desaru Coast Resort &Villas and One&OnlyDesaru Coast. The destination is also home to Adventure Waterpark Desaru Coast - one of the world’s biggest waterparks, Desaru Coast Conference Centre - a fully equipped conference facility, The Els Club Malaysia Desaru Coast – 45 holes of golf in total at two distinct courses, Ocean Course by Ernie Els and Valley Course by Vijay Singh, and Desaru Coast Riverside.

The integrated destination resort earned the accolade as one of TIME Magazine’s World’s Greatest Places of 2021. It provides an indulgent getaway for the discerning leisure and business travelers alike. Located in the south-eastern region of the country, in the state of Johor, Desaru Coast spans over approximately 4000 acres along a pristine 17 km beachfront that faces eastwards over the clear ocean waters. The destination is set amid a rich bio-diverse location and is easily accessible via road, air and sea.

Desaru Development Holdings One Sdn. Bhd. is the master developer of Desaru Coast and is a subsidiary of Desaru Development Corporation Sdn. Bhd. within the Destination Resorts and Hotel Sdn. Bhd. (formerly known as Themed Attractions Resorts & Hotels Sdn. Bhd.) group of companies.

 To find out more, please visit us at and

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

L'Etape Malaysia by Tour de France return to Desaru Coast


●        Organizers fulfill promise to send last year’s winners and a Johor-born cyclist to the prestigious L’Étape Du Tour de France, held in Annemasse, France

●        This second edition features new upgrades including an advanced timing chip and a separate race-course for THE RACE (140km) & THE RIDE (60km) and a dedicated ELITE Category

JOHOR BAHRU, 10 MAY 2023 – After a successful debut in Malaysia last year, L’Étape Malaysia is back with a host of latest upgrades to give cycling enthusiasts a big mission to fulfill when the Tour De France race model gets underway from July 7-8 at the sun-kissed shores of Desaru Coast.

Dubbed “The World’s Greatest Amateur Cycling Event”, L’Étape by Tour de France is the only cyclosportive series that gives amateur cyclists the opportunity to truly live the Tour de France experience where they will race like a Tour de France participant.

Last year’s participation drew a total of 4,700 participants, making L’Étape Malaysia to be officially recognized as the world’s second largest L’Étape by Tour de France.

L’Étape has been organised in more than 20 countries including Malaysia, and for this edition alone over 2,500 participants have signed up so far, with organizers confident of securing 4,000 entries before the closing date of 9 June 2023.

Like last year, L’Étape Malaysia will consist of five racing categories. They include THE RACE (140km) and THE RIDE (60km) made up of individual men and women, as well as the Men’s Team (5 men) and Women’s Team (5 women).

This year’s edition will also see the introduction of the ELITE Category, a limited category that is dedicated exclusively to participants who want to challenge like the pros.

A professional race services will be provided for this category, including  dedicated mobile feeding, professional timing chip, dedicated traffic and logistics support, dedicated neutral services and much more.

Not one to sit on their laurels despite a good turnout last year, the co-organizers MUSE Group Asia and KPRJ Sports have noted feedbacks from the last year’s participants and pledged to stage a more comprehensive spectacle.

One key implementation this year is the introduction of an advanced timing chip technology, in a move to ensure the participants’ precise finishing time upon crossing the finish line.

The 2023 L’Étape Malaysia will also feature an improved technical team to drive enhanced performances from the racers. Cyclomotion – the leading technical provider for amateur racing, will form part of the L’Étape Malaysia technical crew, which means a bigger race technical team from troubleshooting to performance related assistance.

Racers can also expect a different challenge this year with a new route introduced at the long, shaded course of Desaru Coast. The 60km and 140km race routes will be separated so that they do not overlap, allowing cyclists to put their full focus on finishing with their best personal time. While having separate routes would cost the organizers more due to more route collaterals, it is a small price to pay compared to the racing convenience and overall experience for the participants.

This is backed up with a big support from the local authorities, including sufficient traffic personnel to ensure the race flow is smooth from start to finish. To reduce the risks of accidents, the water and aid stations will no longer be stationed by the road shoulder, rather it would be transformed into an “R&R” pitstop for participants to stop and fuel up.

The “R&R” would have its own space, meaning cyclists would have to turn away from the racecourse for their break, and this ultimately decreases the possibility of a pile-up, especially amongst first-timers who are not accustomed to water station stops.

A comprehensive race e-guide, including safety instructions would also be distributed before the race. These will be sent to the registered racers, and a short instructional video would also be available prior to race day.

To further prepare for race week, there will also be an eight-week L’Étape Cycling Clinic powered by aminoVITAL® where studio trainers train alongside interested participants. aminoVITAL® is a sport drink that contains 3,000mg of amino acids with mainly Branched Chain Amino Acids, that helps in energy boosting, muscle endurance and muscle recovery.

Helping athletes carve out a successful career is also one of the objectives of L’Étape, which is set to be fulfilled through last year’s male champion Elmi Juhari and female winner Yeong Zhen Yi who will participate at the L’Étape Du Tour de France along with another Johor-born cyclist, Heng Zi Hen.

The Johor-born representation comes as a testament to the growth of  road cycling in the state, and L’Étape Malaysia is giving a dream opportunity for this individual to participate at the prestigious L’Étape du Tour in France. The L’Étape du Tour de France is a mass cycling event happening the same week as L’Étape Johor.

Elmi, Yeong, and Heng are set for the ultimate experience of competing at the highest level in ‘Wave 0’, which is a starting group composed of all the winners from L’Étape races across the globe.

MUSE Group Asia is proud to fulfill its promise of sending these three representatives to the L’Étape Du Tour de France, and are confident the introduction of the latest technology and safety features would set this event apart from last year.

“We wanted these selected cyclists’ to experience the best of L’Étape, and we are honoured to send them to the prestigious L’Étape Du Tour de France. We have worked hard to ensure that the participants’ get an enriching overall experience, especially when it comes to their safety and race timing. We want them to be able to go out there and give their best with a peace of mind, and we will strive to make that happen,” said Riduwan Matni, CEO of Muse Group Asia.

Yang Berhormat Tuan Hairi bin Mad Shah, Chairman of the Youth, Sports, Entrepreneur Development, Cooperatives and Human Resources, was happy to welcome this international event to the Southern state once again.

“Hosting L’Étape Malaysia last year went some way to reinforcing the event on the global map. With a diverse participation from more than 40 countries this year, we are certain that Johor will also benefit immensely from the domestic tourism boost as we welcome them to experience our various attractions. Sending the Johor-born cyclist to the L’Étape Du Tour de France  is also a testament to Johor’s commitment to sports development to continue unearthing new talents. We look forward to working together with all the stakeholders to make this another successful event,” he said.

For that, KPRJ would be working in tandem with Muse Group Asia to ensure the racers expectations are met. “Kumpulan Prasarana Rakyat Johor Sdn Bhd (“KPRJ”) through its subsidiary, KPRJ Sports Sdn Bhd (“KSSB”) believes for this second year of organising the event, we will deliver the best racing experience for our participants, and it is evident through the latest introductions for this year’s event. We encourage every budding cyclist out there to come and be part of this premium global cycling event,” said Yang Berhormat Dato’ Lukman bin Abu Bakar, Chief Executive Officer of KPRJ.

Ambassador of France to Malaysia His Excellency Axel Cruau was looking forward to everyone converging yet again for this iconic event. “Since 1903, Le Tour de France has been so much more than a cycling race! It is a competition that tests the human limits, and yet that everyone can relate to. It takes place in the unique landscapes of France, and yet it is a show that the whole world can enjoy. It is a part of our national heritage that this year we are thrilled to share in Johor with our Malaysian friends," he said.

“Chek Hup has been the official beverage sponsor – Coffee, Tea & Chocolate of this iconic cycling event for two consecutive years now. We are thrilled to be part of the cycling community once again, and to play our part by serving chilled and refreshing Kokoo Peppermint Chocolate Drink as an energy fuel to help the riders give their best performances. By constantly beholding the core principle of ‘We Value Life’, Chek Hup ensures that its beverages are all natural without any additives or artificial flavourings,” said Joseph Tan, Group Managing Director of Chek Hup.

Roslina Arbak, Chief Executive Officer of Desaru Development Holdings One Sdn. Bhd., master developer and operator of Desaru Coast, said, “As an international destination, we are once again extremely proud and happy to be chosen as the official venue of L’Étape by Tour de France in Malaysia. This year, we are pleased to have Hard Rock Hotel Desaru Coast join in as the Official Hotel for the event.”

“Venue hosting L’Étape Johor has become a Desaru Coast showcase to more international sporting events. As one of the biggest cycling tournaments in the world, hosting L’Étape by Tour de France has not only benefited our destination, it has brought a wider gain to the greater Desaru community. For this reason, Desaru Coast is committed to its longstanding support to Johor state in making Johor a hub for sports tourism in the country. We hope to continue making Desaru Coast the home to L’Étape Malaysia in the years to come,” said Roslina.

For more information including the race routes, accommodation ideas, and other FAQs, go to / /  /

About Muse Group Asia

MUSE Group is a brand activation and experiential marketing agency, specialising in MUSIC, SPORTS and ENTERTAINMENT, with extensive experience in organising large scale and international events, especially in sports. We too have the privilege of consulting a number of blue chip companies and government agencies in the region. In Malaysia, MUSE has organised major sporting events such as the Spartan Race, the Marvel Run, Malaysia’s biggest half marathon – the HSN21km and many more. 

With 10 years of operating in SEA, MUSE is one of the biggest local sports agencies in the region with offices in Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok and Singapore

About KPRJ Sports Sdn Bhd

KPRJ Sports Sdn Bhd (KSSB) is a Sports Management and Development company set up under the Johor state government as their penultimate Sports Development initiative and is wholly owned by Kumpulan Prasarana Rakyat Johor Sdn Bhd (KPRJ).

KSSB aims to be the catalyst for all sports development programs in Johor through the uniting of all sports activities and programs under one roof. These efforts are to be planned and professionally administered by KSSB and their team of capable and experienced personnel.

KSSB’s goal is to empower sports as an industry and lifestyle, as well as acting as a catalyst to unite Bangsa Johor while transforming the people and communities of Johor to be more competitive and resilient both in sports and its related fields. As such, KSSB will bring holistic prosperity to the people and state of Johor towards 2030.