BAGUIO racers continue their dominance of the sport anew as the 2010 season of the Philippine Hill Climb series opened during the weekend.

Carlos Anton led the charges for the Baguio racers blasting the two-kilometer Baksil Stage in San Fernando, La Union, setting a new stage record of 1:46.44 besting a field of over 35 racers from all over the country.

Anton was recently awarded the driver of the year plum by the Automobile Association of the Philippines.

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“It’s a great way to start the year after our sponsors Mark Young-Yokohama, Hornitex and Total re-signed with us for this season. I think this is the best gift I can give them for continuing their support,” Anton said after the race.

Anton’s teammate Frankie Domingo fought hard in group 2 to win the heavily contested class with a dominant run of 2:01.10 using Yokohama’s S-drive tire, while Haruhito Ono from Japan beat Alfie Concepcion of Total-Hornitex for group 4 honors and Ramsey Kairuz from Baguio city topped the group 3 class ahead of Ryan Yu.

Domingo benefited from a change of rules this year in group 2, which aims to even out the competition by only allowing street tires in the class. Jet Ramos in a turbo starlet came in second in the class.

Anton’s main rival for the best time of the day came from Cabspeed stalwart Marc Thomann who used a turbo charged Honda to close off with a time of 1:49.79 seconds.

“The Advan A050 tire Yokohama provided for us this year seems to work well with our CRX tuned by Mohspeed’s Morris Miranda. We are happy to start our defense of the title this way,” said Anton’s team owner Mark Young.

The historic car class was won by Pong Soriano, followed by Eko Adan and Dennis Ku. (Roderick Osis)