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Running on Cheonggyecheon

Posted September. 28, 2005 07:35,   


“Let’s run along Cheonggyecheon, let’s run across Seoul.”

The third Hi-Seoul Cheonggyecheon-Han River marathon race (hosted by the city of Seoul, sponsored by Dong-A Ilbo) will commence on October 2 at 9:00 a.m. in the newly restored regions of Cheonggyecheon and the Han River.

The race has additional significance, being the first masters’ marathon event to be held along the reconstructed Cheonggyecheon.

The race will be held on two separate courses. The participants will take off from Seoul Plaza, situated in front of the Seoul city hall, and run back and forth around the restored Cheonggyecheon for the 10km race, while the full course will stretch further along Jungnangcheon and the Han River. Full course runners are expected to exit Jungnangcheon, go across Jamsugyo (Jamsu Bridge), and meet the turning point by Gayang Bridge to make the final run into Yeouido Park.

For those participants who might be unable to complete the full course, the city plans to also have a mid-point finish by the 24.64 km mark (Yeouido Park).

Experiencing Cheonggyecheon on Foot-

The race has gathered attention from a host of marathon enthusiasts as it will provide the chance to view everything that the restored Cheonggyecheon has to offer. Historic heritage spots such as the Ogan Water Gate, the Ok-ryu stream, and a mural of King Jeongjo are on display, while the “Eight sights of Cheonggye” (Cheonggye Plaza, Gwangtong-gyo, Supyo-gyo, Pattern Riverside, Washing Site, the Wall of Participation and Harmony, Haneulmul Site, and the Marsh of Willows), a harmonious crossover between the past and present, nature, and cutting-edge technology, will give the runners plenty upon which to ponder.

A “Fun Run” over Records and Rankings-

Specialists are advising that participants make it a “fun run,” taking in what the once again vivid Cheonggyecheon offers in this special event. The area around Mojeon-gyo and Sewoon-gyo consists of rubble, making it prone for runners to sprain their ankles. Participants must take extra care, with reference to the death of a marathon runner who excessively sought after the records.

Hwang Gyu-hun (coach of Konkuk University’s marathon team), an executive at the Korea Athletics Federation, said, “It’s important to enjoy the running rather than worrying about records and rankings. A strict warm-up session of light running and stretching exercises is the key to avoid any mishaps.”

Jong-Koo Yang yjongk@donga.com