Saturday, February 21, 2009

Looking forward to national qualifiers in the GenSan Milo Marathon elims

The 33rd Milo Marathon General Santos City regional elimination race fires off at the country's tuna capital early tomorrow, February 22, and this time around we may finally have Mindanaon runners making it to the national finals in Manila by winning a local race.

Both defending champions in last year's male and female categories are reportedly joining the race - Junel Boncit of Tagum, Davao del Norte and Estela Mamac-Diaz of Davao City.

Boncit ruled last year's race with a finishing time of 1:08:05, way faster than the 1:15:00 qualifying time set for this year. In fact, last year's results show all top 4 runners finishing in less than 1:15:00. Elmer Bartolo came in second at 1:08:40, Rafael Poliquit was third in 1:12:47, and Noel Espina was in fourth place with 1:13:01.

On the distaff side, Diaz recorded a fast 1:24:05, again way below this year's 1:35:00 qualifying time for women. Second placer Monaliza Ambasa (1:26:47) and third placer Merlie Edullantes (1:33:35) also finished with times below 1:35:00.

Given the relatively flat terrain of General Santos City, fast results below this year's qualifying times are really very possible tomorrow. More than that, both Boncit and Mamac are strong runners.

In Kidapawan City in 2006, both Boncit and Diaz ruled the regional elimination race of the 30th edition of the Milo Marathon. Boncit led the men's field with a time of 1:19:37 while Diaz finished unchallenged in 1:41.14.

Boncit, who decided to run in Kidapawan City then to avoid the tough competition in Davao, discovered that running in this place I call home in the foothills of Mt. Apo was not that easy either.

“Mahirap pala ang course dito dahil paglabas mo, pababa ang daan at pagbalik mo paakyat naman (The course here is difficult because you start off going downhill but it's all uphill on the way back)," Boncit was quoted as saying.

If Boncit's time in the tough Kidapawan City 21k course then was that fast, there can be no doubt that he can run much faster in General Santos. So with Estela.

To both of them, good luck!

(Photo from shows Estela Mamac-Diaz at the finish of the 32nd Milo Marathon regional elimination race in General Santos City last year)


bong said...

Hey Caloy! You write great posts but you don't do it often enough. Nakakabitin. You should write more often.

Given their fast times in last year's race and the flat course the 2 Mindanaoans should easily finish within the national qualifying times.

caloyb said...

to hear that from a regular follower is really jolting! :)
i'll try to update my blog more often, pare, per your advise.

i am pretty sure a number of runners here in Mindanao have that 1:15:00/1:35:00 in them. the Davao City elimination run is another race to look forward to for fast finishes.

salamat sa patuloy na pagsubaybay... kahit nakakabitin1 :)

Rick Gaston said...

Hey Caloy, man you are excited about this. I've never seen you put up so many entries:) You meant February 22 right, not June? Admittedly I don't know any of the runners but you make it sound exciting. Looking forward to your report of the results.

caloyb said...

thanks for the correction, rick. i missed that when i previewed the article.:)

i have always followed the milo marathon regional eliminations here in mindanao, but this idea of not having anyone break that qualifying time has really gotten me excited.