It's a fairly well-know fact that if you eat a lot of pastry your days as an aspiring athlete are numbered. Too much stodge does not a sprinter make!
So it comes as no great surprise to learn that the recent local entry winner of the Singapore marathon, a pastry chef called Tam Chua Puh, cheated.
When he turned up at the tape several minutes ahead of Singapore's finest athletes it took the race organisers completely by surprise. It transpires that Mr tam is somewhat of a dab hand at such deception having pulled the same ruse in the previous two marathons.
The reason; he simply wanted a medal and T-shirt for finishing the race. So he ran 6 kilometres and then took a short cut to the finishing line, choosing to avoid running the additional 36 k's required for a legitimate result.
Of course he is but one in a long line of marathon cheats. Take the case of Cuban born Rosie Ruiz who in 1980 was crowned the female winner of the 84th Boston Marathon. She traveled by subway through the majority of the course only to burst through spectators a half mile from the finish and claim victory at the finishing line.
Then there is a Michigan dentist who magically seems to appear on the winners podium despite being photographed near the back of the pack for the majority of the race. Or the ex-Army mechanic who took a free ride on a spectator bus only to rejoin the Kielder Marathon and claim a medal. The latter was subsequently disqualified as several people had noticed him hiding behind a tree near the finishing line before he slotted in behind the leading two runners near the finish.
I blame Tam Chua Puh's lethargy on his trade. The best pastry, as any cook will tell you, is made with lard as its molecular structure gives a flaky crust. And lard is a product of pork which, in combination with sugar and salt, is enough to slow anybody down.
Whatever his reasons or motivation, the marathon days of Mr Tam are well and truly over and he will have to content himself with jogging around McRitchie reservoir in the future.