Freeman Cebu Sports

Sports dynasties

SPORT EYE - Raffy T. Uytiepo - The Freeman

If politics has its dynasties, sports isn’t far behind.  Take a look at the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC).  Jose “Peping” Cojuangco has been sitting there for a long time and it looks like he’s not planning  to move out “Mahangin sa taas” could be what Peping is probably thinking.  On November 25, the POC will hold its quadrennial elections and several names have surfaced. Although considered a strong contender, sports patron Manny Pangilinan is not interested.  Also considered are  boxing’s Ricky Vargas,  Abraham Tolentino  of cycling, Mariano Araneta of football, Richard Gomez of fencing and my good friend Tom Carrasco of triathlon.  In the last election, Peping  ran unopposed.  Twenty two votes are needed to win the election and there are 43 votes to be cast with 40 coming from the different NSA’s.  In order to qualify for the position, one must be an incumbent  president of an NSA for four years and must  be active in the POC General Assembly.  Peping has been a fixture in the POC and during his term the Philippines’ performances in the Sea Games, Asian Games and the Olympics have been  dismal.  We even slid  to seventh place in the Myanmar Sea Games.  My friend Ted C.  said, “Peping should be replaced now, he has lived his usefulness este… uselessness.”  ABANGAN!

No one on sight

After Mary Joy Tabal and Vertek Buenavista  it looks like there’s  nobody on sight to fill in their shoes.  Although Tabal went to the  RIO Olympics, her performance is nothing to crow about.

On the other hand, Vertek’s  national  record  of 2:18:44, will be hard  to break.  Vertek broke my protege’s Herman Suizo’s mark of 2:19:50 after 10 years  and  with the current clocking registered in marathons these days, it will take a  long time  before a new hero comes along.

Even the Kenyans here could hardly make 2:30.  In the shorter races it’s the same story.  The 10K mark of 29 mins.  (Also by Vertek)  will remain unbroken, what with  runners clocking 31 minutes for a best effort. Maybe “na purga na ta sa daghang kaayong mga  dagan.”

Did you know?

Bob Wieland  completed his first Los Angeles Marathon in over 74 hours.  Wieland who lost both legs after stepping on a mortar round while serving in Vietnam, uses his hands in the absence of his legs. Wieland once said “Athlete is not written on your hamstrings or grip or pitching arm, it’s written in your heart.

Lilian Copeland  was the first  female thrower setting numerous records in the shot put, javelin and discus.  She won the silver medal in the discus in the  1928 Amsterdam  Games, the first women’s track and field event in Olympic history.  Four years later in Los Angeles, she won the gold medal on her final throw. A Jewish athlete, she chose to boycott the 1936 Olympics in Nazi Germany.

May Sutton    A sixteen-year old from  Pasadena, won the US Championship (precursor to the modern US Open).  She won her first  singles title at Wimbledon in 1905, becoming the first American male or female to win there.  In 1908 she became the first sports celebrity to reign as the Tournament of Roses Queen.

Alejandro Lavorante In 1962 the Argentine  heavy weight fought Cassius Clay,  then 22, who said “Lavorante will fall in five”.  That night, Clay knocked out Lavorante with a left hook in the 5th round.  Later that year,  Lavorante was knocked out by John Riggins in the sixth round at the  Olympic Auditorium.  Lavorante slipped into a coma and died.

Johnny Weissmuller  became the first person to swim 100 meters in under one minute.  He won 3 Olympic gold medals.  Undefeated in his  amateur career, he moved to LA and  became Tarzan  in the movies.  Other athletes turned- Tarzan included swimmer Buster Crabbe, shot put star Herman Brix and decathlete Glenn Morris.  It was said that during his last days at an elderly house, Weissmuller was ape-yelling and scared the nurses.

Breaking News   Trinity  Gay is, a high school runner and daughter of former US Olympic sprinter Tyson, was fatally shot early Sunday.  Trinity was probably hit in a crossfire between a driver in a Dodge Charger and another driver in a dark sports car.  Trinity was a sophomore sprinter star at Lafayette H.S who placed fourth in last year’s girls, 100 meter state final.  Tyson Gay won the 100m and 200m in the 2007 World Championship but suffered a hamstring injury in the Beijing Olympics.

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