Torres bags women’s crown
Caecent No-ot Magsumbol (The Freeman) - August 2, 2015 - 10:00am

CEBU, Philippines – It was the toughest, yet the happiest and most memorable race ever for birthday boy August Benedicto after he successfully defended his title by the skin of his teeth against Cebu's pride Philip Duenas in the drama-filled Filipino male elite, while Monica Torres returned in style in the women's division during the 2015 Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Philippines yesterday at Shangri-la's Mactan Resort and Spa in Lapu-Lapu City.

Benedicto, who turned 31 years old, bucked a bum stomach to overhaul a four-minute deficit and repeat as champ with the fastest time of four hours, 28 minutes and 36 seconds among Filipino elite entries. He was ahead of Duenas by just six seconds, while the cramps-hit Banjo Norte took the third place honors with a time of 4:29:05.

"Ang pangit talaga nang simula ko. Ang sama ng pakiramdam ko kasi ang sakit talaga ng tiyan ko," said Benedicto. "Pero nag-pray lang talaga ako na sana tulungan ako ni Lord para na rin birthday gift ko na to sa sarili ko," said Benedicto.

Duenas though was just happy enough to survive another half Ironman action that even if he was still trying to recover, he did the 'extra mile challenge' from Cobra Energy Drink for all participants for the benefit of indigent students of Manipis Elementary School.

Torres, on the other hand, was right on her decision to return to the Filipina female elite as she won the crown with a personal best time of 4:39:37.  Torres ranked fifth overall behind the amazing Caroline Steffen, who won her fourth IM 70.3 Philippine race.

Cebu-based Maria Hodges of Team Omega Pro placed second with a time of 4:53:09 followed by LC Langit in 5:05:09.

Cebuano actor Matteo Guidicelli, Cobra Energy Drink's poster boy, couldn't contain his happiness because aside from finishing the battle, he also completed the 1.3-mile extra challenge that is really worthy of a tight hug from his girlfriend, pop princess Sarah Geronomino. It was truly a triple celebration for Guidicelli as his Giorgia finished third in the 18-24 age group with the time of 6:33:37.

In the relay competition, RDAK's mixed relay team of swimmer Loren Dale Echavez, cyclist John Renee Mier and Kenyan runner Isaac Simat reigned supreme in a field of 90 contenders, dethroning La Europa manned by Keith Ocampo, Santy Barnachea and Cebuana long distance running star Mary Joy Tabal.

RDAK clocked in 3:58:20 as against La Europa's 4:10:29, while ACCRALAW-Big Chill wound up third in 4:42:56.

In the all-male relay, Ford Forza composed of young swimmer Remolino, Joseph Miller and Noel Tillor beat the other RDAK team manned by Ray Suerte, Nino Surban and Prince Joey Lee for the top spot. Ford Forza finished in 4:12:33, while RDAK-A clocked in 4:14:25. Tricore took the third spot in 4:49:27.

RDAK-B powered by swimmer Ivy Suarez, national cyclist Avegail Rombaon and runner Ross Rica Deen baged a silver in the all-female relay action dominated by Team David, while Tri-Mates got the bronze. (FREEMAN)

  • Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
Login is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

or sign in with