Filipinos serve as pacers in Rome marathon

Filipinos serve as pacers in Rome marathon
From left: Filipino international pacers Cathleen, Jeanette, Kara and JC Santa Rosa from the United States, and Ireland-based Rolando Espina and Mike Gonda.
Contributed photo

MANILA, Philippines – Six Filipinos had the honor of serving as international pacers in the Run Rome The Marathon last March 17.

Pacers have an important role because they guide the runners to achieve their goals. 

Mike Gonda and Roland Espina, who both live in Ireland, and New York-based couple JC and Jeanette Santa Teresa and their children Kara and Ashley were chosen as pacers in the 42.195km race, which attracted a record 19,000 marathoners and 15,167 runners. 

"I'm honored to be back again. I'm with my good friend Mike Gonda in the 3:25 balloon. We expected the best in atmosphere and fun in the Rome Marathon. Obviously, the challenge was on how to motivate and inspire the runners who trust us to get them to their desired finishing time," said Espina. "It's also a way for us to take a time off work and enjoy Rome together with our love ones."
Gonda was delighted to be a part of the pacing team.

"Run Rome The Marathon is one of the best in the world. It is a fast flat race. The only challenge to all aiming for their personal best is the cobblestone, so they had to be mindful." 

Rixone Martinez, a Batangas native who works in Barcelona, Spain as a waiter, was the top Filipino finisher after clocking three hours, 7 minutes and .02 seconds. 

According to Alona Cochon, a delegate of the Italian Marathon for the Filipino community, the Filipino runners paid a courtesy call on Philippine Ambassador to Italy Neal Imperial.

Other teams which joined the marathon were Alabama Running Team, AV Valuwe Netherlands, EPIC-Endurance, Phils Ireland Club, G.S. Maiano, Italia Marathon Club, Filipino Runners and Bikers Rome, LBM Sports, Pinoy Runners (Abu Dhabi), Pinoy Runners (Belfast), Pinoy Runners (London), Pinoy Runners (Milan), Pinoy Runners (USA), Pinoy Teens Salinlahi-Cheer Station, PPP- Pinoy Pagong Padyakero, PSI- PADYAK Society Ireland, PURI-Pilipino Ultra, Runners Italy and PR Netherlands.

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