Wednesday, May 16, 2012

K-Swiss ITU Subic Bay International Triathlon presented by Century Tuna: Swim, Bike Run under the Subic Sun (Part 2)


At 6:00am, May 5, 2012, people were starting to crowd up in the Dungaree area where the swim leg would start. I began to notice delegations from China, Malaysia, Australia and Philippines were getting ready to set on the beach area. Other contenders maximized their time to dip in the open waters for some warm-up laps, just to get accustomed and acclimatized to the cold water temperature.

 Tri-athletes of Malaysia...


Philippine Team...

Team China-Macao

Male-Elite group getting ready for the first leg...

 SWIM LEG

The first batches of swimmers that were set off are the ages 13-15 years old category, the Mini-sprint Triathlon event where our young but promising triathletes namely, Megali Echauz, Batang Pinoy 2011 Champion, Jessica Salazar from Laguna, V. Deldeo of Olongapo City, Sixto Lalanto of CDO, Jumuel Patilan of CDO and Justin Chiongbian of Cebu, compete with some of Asia’s equally competitive teens coming from Malaysia, Thailand and China. The record time of these young athletes gained on the three legs hope to qualify them in the 2014 Youth Olympics Games.

Mini-Sprint 13-15 

Team Trimac...

Top three swimmers for age 13-15 Mini-Sprint (male) :
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three swimmers for age 13-15 Mini-sprint (Female):
 1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
 2. Megali Echauz (Phil)
 3. Vicky Deldio (Phil)

The day was a bit warmer than expected, so the race officials decided to merge the Male-Elite U23 category to the elite batch of swimmers and all of them will plunge the open waters together in order to grab the cooler weather in the morning. Leading the Philippine team was Nikko Huelgas, all were hoping for him to get a place in the winner’s podium later in the afternoon.

 Male mini-sprint...

Under the category of Male-Elite U23, swim rankings are as follows:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)
3. John Chicano (Phil)

With the male-elite category where most of the international delegations competed, top swimmers were dominated by Australia, MAR, Ireland and China respectively. Our very own Jonard Saim fell behind in the three events and landed on the 14th place in the end.

 Female mini-sprint...

Ranking in the swim event for the Male-elite:
1. Barrie Shane (Aus)
2. Kane Simpson (Aus)
3. Essadik Mhedi (MAR)

In the female Elite category, our very own Kim Mangrobang have fallen significantly behind her opponents consistently from the beginning. It showed that two months training in Australia weren't enough to go head to head with some of her international contenders.

 Male mini-sprint...

Nikko Huelgas emerging from the water...

Top three swimmers for the female-elite
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)

BIKE LEG

In less than 20 minutes, tri-athletes like Shane Barrie of Australia, Kane Simpson also form Australia and Essadik Mhedi of MAR emerged from the water and dashed to the next transition area for the bike leg. The bike leg is a grueling 40 kilometer distance and all will be exposed under 32 degrees centigrade under the  hot Subic sun.

 Transition one. swim to bike...

Shane Barrie of Australia. First male-elite to mount for the bike leg...



Soon after, Philippines’ Nikko Huelgas finally finished his swim and proceeded immediately for the bike leg. After a while, his team mate John Chicano soon followed to cover the 40 kilometer bike race. By that time, other international contenders were miles away, but the Nikko and his team have showed undaunted spirit to chase them.

 Female mini-sprint on the bike leg...

Tam of China-Hong-kong getting ready to mount...

Top three bikers ages 13-15 mini-sprint (male):
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three bikers 13-15 mini-sprint (Female)
1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
2. Vicky Deldio (Phil)
3. Megali Echauz (Phil)

Top three bikers male-elite U23:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. John Chicano (Phil)
3. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)

Female Elite...



Top three bikers male-elite
1. Bai Faquan (China)
2. Benjamin Shaw (Ireland)
3. Barrie Shane (Aus)

Top three bikers female-elite
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)

RUN LEG

After several swim finishers, I decided to leave the area and go to the next transition for the run leg. Fortunately, Edsel a Photo blogger I met in Manila allowed me to hitch a ride to go to the transition from bike to run.

 Transition two. bike to run. Leading the pack is Tam of Hong-kong...

Essadik of MAR advancing several lengths from Simpson of Australia...

When we arrived most of the mini-sprint tri-athletes were already finishing their 5k run leg. At the turn of the transition area, everybody is crowding up waiting for the big-league to arrive. In a short while, a group of Australians were nearing the area followed by China and other contenders. They instantly hurried mounting their bikes and sprinted to cover the last leg of the 10 kilometer run. The running course s a 2.5 kilometer loop, so all runners were to complete four rounds to cover the 10 kilometer distance.

 Barrie of Australia chasing Bai of China

At that point, I was hoping that Nikko and his team would arrive soon, but it took them a while than expected. When they started their run leg, the other international contenders are already in their second loop but Filipino supporters were still in the hope they would catch up.

 Jonard Saim trying to chase the pack in the run leg...

Grace Musgrove of Australia...

Wang Yi of China...

Jiao of China...

Zhang Yi of China...


FINISH LINE

After an intense, almost two hours of waiting, finally, the finish line for the tri-athletes was at hand. It was a ghastly finish for most of the tri-athletes, but certainly they have conquered it. A lot of drama happened at the finish line where some athletes practically collapsed in exhaustion and physical fatigue resulted from the high intensity of the three disciplines and heat. For some who gained a lot of distance in the start but have fallen in the succeeding events, it only shows that a master of one event will not guarantee victory. On the other hand, a slow start with perseverance and consistency can gain an athlete with significant distance, some of  the factors needed to conquer the sports of triathlon.

 First place in the male-elite...

2nd place...

After crossing the finish line, Fellgate of Zimbabue collapsed from exhaustion...


Final ranks…

Top three ages 13-15 mini-sprint (male):
1. Sixto Louie Lalanto (Phil)
2. Jimuel Patilian (Phil)
3. Tareef Azfar (Malaysia)

Top three 13-15 mini-sprint (Female):
1. Zoe Bowden (Malaysia)
2. Vicky Deldio (Phil)
3. Megali Echauz (Phil)

Top three male-elite U23:
1. Nikko Huelgas (Phil)
2. John Chicano (Phil)
3. Shimri Lim (Malaysia)

Top three male-elite:
1. Bai Faquan (China)
2. Benjamin Shaw (Ireland)
3. Shane Barrie (Aus)

Top three female-elite:
1. Eri Kawashima (JPN)
2. Grace Musgrove (Aus)
3. Wang YI (China)

 A pose by some of the world's strongest Tri-athletes...


Philippines bagged the first and second place under Mens-elite U23...

Congratulations to those who have placed themselves in the winner’s podium. For those who finished with a few seconds behind their opponents, including my friend John Jacob, you have the whole year to train and make your performance a few seconds faster in next K-Swiss ITU Subic Bay International Triathlon 2013.

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