SIXTY-SEVEN runners from the Iloilo qualifying leg are among those competing in the National Finals of the 42nd Milo Marathon on Sunday in Laoag City.
Qualified for the men’s 42k race are Prince Joey Lee, Rafael Pescos, Ryan Hulleza, Jo-Fel Jabagat, Bennie Murillo, Berden Ansiong Jr., Oscar Dumaram, Roger Molinos, Romeo Tamayo, and Nevi Sarraga.
Meanwhile qualifiers in the distaff side include Stephanie Cardosale, Alexandra Ganzon, Ann Magdalene Tubal, Jessa Mie Sustituedo, Mary Ann Javarez, Joyce Serquillos, and Regina dela Cruz.
“We wish them luck in the National Finals,” said Moises Salomon, head of Iloilo City government’s Sports Development Division. “The competition there will be tough but I know our Ilonggo runners will give their all to keep in step with tougher runners.”
Rio Olympian and Southeast Asian Games gold medalist Mary Joy Tabal will aim for her sixth consecutive title in the women’s side while Joerge Andrade hopes to retain the men’s title.
Aside from Tabal, other elite runners in the women’s division are four-time champion Christabel Martes, Luisa Raterta and Christine Hallasgo, while contesting Andrade’s title are Bacolodnon Jeson Agravante, Eduardo Buenavista and Eric Panique.
Each of the champions in the 42k category will receive P150,000 cash, a TAG Heuer watch and a Strideline performance socks from Sock Society. They will get an additional P150,000 if they win the Open category.
Another P100,000 will be awarded to the runner who will break the record time set by Buenavista (2:18:53) in the men’s category and Tabal (2:48:00) in the women’s category./PN