THE festivity and revelry in Davao City did not end with the 82nd Araw ng Davao Parada Davaoeño last March 16 as this week has even become busier and abuzz with the second staging of the second Alveo Ironman 70.3 Davao set at the Azuela Cove on Sunday.
Celebrity athlete Piolo Pascual-led Sunlife Tri Team's stint spices up this year's edition that has grown to 2,200 participants from the inaugural staging's 1,800 turnout last year.
Pascual's team held a press conference at Seda Hotel on Friday, March 22, to launch their debut in the Davao race although they have been a regular campaigner in Ironman 70.3 Cebu for several years now.
Sports Development Division of the City Mayor's Office (SDD-CMO) officer-in-charge Mikey Aportadera said that "it's going to be a big fiesta" with the presence of Pascual and his teammates Jan Michael Chiu and Toniel Ty.
"Everybody is very much excited to have you guys racing with us for the first time. Last year hinahanap nila kayo. Now you guys are already here, I guess everybody will be on the sidelines and at the starting line. Thank you for joining us," Aportadera told the Sunlife Tri Team during the press conference.
Identities of other celebrity athletes, according to organizing Sunrise Events, Incorporated yesterday, will have yet be known during race day although an SEI staff spotted Bubbles Paraiso at The Tent of Azuela Cove.
SEI earlier released a statement that Matteo Guidicelli, Kim Atienza and Dingdong Dantes are also seeing action.
The return of defending champions Maurico Mendez of Mexico and Radka Kahlefeldt of Czech Republic, meanwhile, is also getting much attention as more contenders from a total of 38 countries will be out to challenge them.
Meanwhile, side events of the prestigious half Ironman kicked off yesterday with the Alaska Family Run held at People's Park that drew a total of 1,021 participants and the Herbalife Nutrition Iron Girl five-kilometer run at the Azuela with 1,200 entries, doubling the 600 runners last year.
SEI general manager Princess Galura said Dabawenyos must be proud since Alveo Ironman 70.3 Davao reaped three international awards
on its first year of organizing the year last year - best post-race celebration, recommended to a friend and will visit again.
The Alaska IronKids, on the other hand, will kick off at 5 a.m today at Azuela Cove.
It will be a hot and exciting Ironman 70.3 weekend. Participants and spectators alike must keep hyrdated. Have fun!