ABOUT 1,700 triathletes signed up for the Regent Aguila Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championships on the opening day of registration yesterday.
Hundreds of Cebuanos gathered in the Cebu Provincial Capitol Social Hall for the onsite registration that marks the start of the athletes’ journey for the 1.9-kilometer swim, 90K bike and 21K race.
The Regent Aguila Enery Drink 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championships 2018 is slated on Aug. 5 at the Shangri-La Mactan and Resort in Lapu-Lapu City. The race will also stretch to the cities of Cebu, Mandaue and Talisay.
“Basically we’re happy with the turnout. There are a lot of people who went to the onsite registration areas both in Cebu and Davao,” said Princess Galura, general manager of Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI), the company behind Ironman races in the country.
The SEI spearheaded a simultaneous onsite registration in Davao City and Cebu City. Davao will host the 2018 Alveo Ironman 70.3 Philippines in March.
“As of noon, in Cebu we have 1,700 participants while in Davao City, we have 1,271. We hope that Cebu will pick up. The relay category in Cebu is already closed, the individual category is still open,” she said.
In Cebu, the registrants said that they’re really looking forward to register here since it’s the best triathlon race in the country.
“The slots in Cebu sell out fast, so we make sure that we’re in the list. Registration is exciting,” said former footballer Voltaire Montebon, who registered in both the Cebu and Davao races.
“I’m excited for Davao 70.3, I think the race there will be nice. Davao City has good roads, and it’s their first time to host,” he added.
For triathlete John Philip Dueñas, the races in Cebu and Davao next year are crucial to him as he will try to bounce back from a disappointing finish in the 2017 edition two months ago.
“I will really practice. I want to redeem myself. There will be a friendly competition among the local elite, which is good for the level of competition in the country,” said Dueñas.
Cebu City Councilor Jerry Guardo was also present during the onsite registration and was one of the participants eager to sign up.
“I’m very excited for this registration because its my first time. I’ve been looking forward to this in the past years. Now I’m registered in the relay category,” said the deputy mayor for sports.
Guardo, who will bike for his team, said that this race is the model of sports tourism in the Queen City of the South.
“This boosts local tourism. We at the City Council are giving our all out support to this competition. I’m glad that I’m going to be part (as one of the participants) next year,” said Guardo. (RSC)