Alaska Milk Corp. chairman Wilfred Uytengsu does a groufie with professional triathletes and participants of the Alaska Run Out.
Jun Mendoza
Best of the best gear up for Ironman duel
Olmin Leyba (The Philippine Star) - August 4, 2018 - 12:00am

LAPU-LAPU CITY, Philippines — Elite tri-warriors brace for a gripping battle royale for top honors in what’s largely considered as a world championship-caliber field in the Regent Aguila Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific Championship that explodes tomorrow at Shangri-la’s Mactan Resort and Spa here.

Australian 2016 world champion Tim Reed, three-time world titlist Craig Alexander, 70.3 Davao ruler Mauricio Mendez, and former regional champs Tim Van Berkel, Josh Amberger and Braden Currie headline a stellar 19-man roster going all-out for the coveted men’s pro crown while Mel Hauschildt, the reigning AsPac titlist, banners the 14 contenders in the women’s side along with Radka Kahlefeldt, winner of IM 70.3 races in Davao and Subic, Caroline Steffen, a four-time champ in the IM races in the country.

“These are the guys I have much respect for and that also brings a different dynamic to the race. You know with these guys, it’s always hard to make a race strategy so I’m gonna go back to the simple strategy which is looking at what I can do and trying to get in the finish line fastest,” said Reed.

The 39 world-class pros graced yesterday’s meet the pros presscon, where they were joined by VIPs led by Sunrise Events, Inc. founder Fred Uytengsu, Ironman Asia Pacific CEO Geoff Meyer, Regent exec Jennifer See, Lapu-Lapu Mayor Paz Radaza, Cebu provincial administration Mark Tolentino, Tourism Sec. Bernadette Romulo Puyat, and acclaimed designer Kenneth Cobunpue, who created exquisite pearl-studded trophies and medals for the winners.

“I have in front of me, I was about to say an impressive cast but I’ll be understating that, so without a doubt, it’s the absolute best cast of pros we’ve ever had in the country and it’s actually close to a world championship (field),” said Uytengsu, whose SEI is organizing races for the last 10 years.

“It’s something that I’m thrilled really for,  to just to watch these guys go out and give it to each other, it’s going to be one hell of a race,” said Myer.

Meanwhile, kids from the 6-8, 9-10, 11-12, and 13-14 age categories take the spotlight in the Alaska IronKids race today, also at Shangri-La’s Mactan Beach.

Over 350 young tri warriors answer the starting gun for the season-ending swim-bike-run race, the local junior version of the international triathlon series Ironman put up annually by Alaska to promote a well-balanced lifestyle for the youth.

It is also being held to help kids develop the values of discipline, hard work and determination through a series of races and at the same time prepare them for future Ironman events.

The Ironman 70.3 Phl’s other backers are bike course partners City of Cebu, Mandaue and Talisay, official logistics and courier partner 2GO Express, official hydration partners Gatorade, official energy gel Gu, official swim cap TYR, official footwear and apparel Asics and official registration partner Active Network and official hotels BE Resorts Mactan, Crimson, Waterfront Airport Hotel and Casino Mactan and Mont and Michel and Metropolitan Cebu Water District.

Other backers are  media partners Hyper HD on Cignal and The Philippine Star,  David’s Salon, Intercare, Prudential Guarantee, The Mactan Newtown and SunLife Financial, Air Asia, AlcoPlus, Cetaphil, CrampFix, DeVant, Fern-C, Mactan Cebu, Mont St. Michel Purified Drinking Water, Omega Pain Killer, Prozza, Sanicare, Smart, Ssangyong.

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