To learn more about the new Reebok One Series running shoes, I was invited for a workshop at CrossFit Fire City. Together with seven other bloggers, we spent a good part of a Saturday morning learning about running techniques and how choosing the right shoes can help you run more efficiently.
The Reebok One Series represents an interesting running innovation, as the shoes under this collection is built from back to front, instead of bottom up.
One of the biggest endurance races in this region is the 12-hour Malaysia Merdeka Endurance Race (MMER) held at the Sepang International Circuit. Last year, the PETRONAS Syntium Team defended their title with the same car, the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT3 #1, and the same drivers – Nobuteru Taniguchi, Masataka Yanagida and Dominic Ang. (Read my MMER photo postcard here)
That was the debut of the highly sought-after SLS AMG GT3 in the region and also the SLS AMG GT3′s first ever victory in long-distance endurance racing worldwide. The PETRONAS Syntium Team was rewarded for this achievement with the “Best Racing Performance” award at the AMG Customer Sports Season Finale at the end of the year in 2011.
This year, the team is aiming to defend their title once more and make it three in a row. That would make their fourth MMER win, first clinching it in 2009 with the BMW Z4M. The line-up for this year is very exciting!!
Because… 1 team, 2 countries, 2 races, 4 cars, 10 drivers!!!
Owning a car in Singapore now is getting to a point as tough as asking my grandfather to climb Mount Everest. I can’t even begin how horrible the conditions are – high COE prices, higher ERP prices, stricter loan regulations.
I came across this letter on Facebook addressed to a Mr. XXX from “a very disgruntled and upset middle-income Singapore citizen” and I thought it summed up the situation quite well.
Here’s the letter from Mr Thomas Choo:
Dear Mr. XXX,
I have been wanting to get this off my chest for quite sometime now but sadly couldn’t as I have been busy tending to my family needs until I saw the latest COE prices which prompted me to do so.
Have you ever wondered are your so-called policies effective in keeping the car population at a manageable level? I seriously do not think so. Look at your measures taken so far, increase COE prices, increase ERP prices, implement new car loan policies etc etc. Is any of them effective at all?
Look at the COE prices now. Despite the fact they are at ridiculous levels now, people are still buying new cars without batting an eyelid. Especially the rich where COE prices are not even in their equation, be it 10k or 100k.
You then increase ERP prices, hoping to keep our roads smooth-flowing, especially during peak hours. Has it worked? Not only our roads are still congested, people are flaring up more due to the constant jams now. Tempers fray, people get more impatient, road rage occurs, accidents happen more frequently.
Thereafter you came up with the brilliant idea of imposing new car loan policies whereby potential car buyers had to fork out at least half of the car’s value in cold hard cash. All these in an attempt to keep away people from buying cars. What has it done in the end? Your wonderful idea caused a lot of used car dealers to go bust as all their cars were stuck in their showrooms, gathering cobwebs in the process.
Now, a car has been put out of reach among many people, especially those from the lower and middle income groups. Some of these people I know really need one, be it for work, family or other purposes. Sadly, due to your measures, they are unable to afford one now, even a bread and butter model in the market. The funny thing is, you guys keep complaining our birth rate is at an all-time low, we are not getting married and starting a family but hey, have you ever tried taking public transport with 2 kids, 2 strollers and other barang barangs in tow? Their cash has been reserved for family needs, where to find an extra 50k to place as downpayment for a car? Makes sense, no?
The general public’s resentment is clear for all to see. You do not need to be a rocket scientist to know this. Heck, I don’t even know whether in a few years’ time, do I have the means to extend my COE or do I have to end up sending my very well-maintained car to the scrapyard if the COE prices maintain at the same rate as they are now? The thought is mind-boggling, to say the least.
Oh ya, and before you tell us not to keep complaining and help to think of solutions instead of running our country down, please be reminded that the one earning a million dollars salary is YOU, not us. If we need to help you think of solutions then what are you here for?
Last but not least, if you can’t even control the car population now, what makes you think you can do so when you welcome 6.9 million people to our tiny island in 2030?
A very disgruntled and visibly upset middle-income citizen
I’ve always been very fond of the Volkswagen Golf GTI and I was thrilled when I received the invite to go for the GTI Driving Experience at Changi Exhibition Centre to push some limits of the new seventh-generation GTI.
Volkswagen Singapore, in partnership with Pirelli the official tyre partner, held this event from Thursday, 18 July to Sunday, 21 July, for members of the media, specially invited guests, as well as members of the public who signed up.
While most people are planning for a much-needed break this long weekend (National Day and Hari Raya), I will be down at Fuji Speedway covering the seven-hour race of the Super Taikyu Series 2013 Round 4.
It’s only been three weeks since the last round of the Series, held at Twin Ring Motegi.
Twin Ring Motegi (ツインリンクもてぎ) got its name from having two race tracks: a 2.493-kilometre oval and a 4.801-kilometre road course. It was built in 1997 by Honda, as part of Honda’s effort to bring the IndyCar Series (hence the oval track) to Japan, helping to increase their knowledge of American open-wheel racing. Honda fans would be delighted to visit the Honda Collection Hall, a museum totally dedicated for Honda vehicles (read about my first visit to the Honda Collection Hall here).
Round 3 of the Super Taikyu Series 2013 was a five-hour race on the Motegi road course and the weather in Japan was just as hot (not as humid) as Singapore.
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