Future Nats eyed in Alaska IronKids
Baniqued is now one of the country’s top junior triathletes having placed 16th in the 2019 Gyeongju ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships in Korea and 13th in the Subic Bay ASTC Triathlon Asian Youth Olympic Games Qualifier the year before.
STAR/ File
Future Nats eyed in Alaska IronKids
Joey Villar (The Philippine Star) - August 14, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Alaska Fortified IronKids hopes to continue to produce more top-caliber products in the mold of national youth team mainstays Juan Francisco Baniqued and Tara Borlain as it celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

Baniqued is now one of the country’s top junior triathletes having placed 16th in the 2019 Gyeongju ASTC Triathlon Asian Championships in Korea and 13th in the Subic Bay ASTC Triathlon Asian Youth Olympic Games Qualifier the year before.

Borlain, for her part, is an 800-meter run gold medalist in the Palarong Pambansa and now a member of national juniors duathlon squad under the Standard Insurance banner.

Both last raced and ruled their respective divisions three years ago in this annual event.

“Aside from encouraging our kids to move, we at the Alaska Fortified IronKids also want to help the country produce future stars in the sport like the Baniqueds and Borlains,” said Princess Galura, general manager of the organizing Ironman brand, in a webinar Wednesday.

“We expect our products to be the next Nikko Huelgas or August Benedicto,” she added.

Race director Ani de Leon-Brown, a Southeast Asian Games gold and silver medalist, agrees.

“Those are just the few names who continue to be competitive in the sport who started out with us,” she said.

Meanwhile, the race will celebrate its 10th year anniversary with a three-month long calendar unfurling with a virtual run this weekend.

Apart from the online run, which is open to all kids aged 14 years old and below, there will also be online sessions with top pros like De Leon-Brown, Benedicto and Aussies Sam Betten and Dimity-Lee Duke.

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