DAVAO del Norte-based Elias Tabac added a feather to his cap after he emerged overall Beast Elite champion in the Spartan 20 SEA Regional Series held at Vermosa in Imus, Cavite on Saturday, September 25, 2022.

The 29-year-old Tabac clocked a total of two hours and 53 seconds to race past 41 other rivals.

He bested American Gabe Heck and fellow Filipino Andrico Mahilum who finished second and third, respectively.

Heck timed 2:05:25 while Mahilum checked in at 2:06:58 in the 21K obstacle race.

On the distaff side, Filipinos Sandi Menchi Abahan (2:29:53), Marites Nocyao (2:38:44), and Silamie Gutang (2:43:11) grabbed the first three spots.

Tabac, an employee of the Provincial Government of Davao del Norte, said it was such a tough race that he's grateful to survive with flying colors.

"Ang hirap ng rota. Grabe, gihatag jud nako akong best, Ma'am. AWala ko mag-expect nga mudaog. Lisod kaayo 21K sa basakan unya 32 obstacles, grabe kalapok (The route was so hard. I gave my best, Ma'am. I didn't expect to win.The route was hard. It was very difficult, 21K in the wetlands then 32 obstacles, very muddy)," the 2021 champion of the World’s Highest Obstacle Course Race (OCR) at the crater of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, East Africa where he earned the Guinness Book of World Record, told Sun.Star Davao on Sunday, September 26 in a Facebook interview.

He completed the Beast Elite's 32 obstacles that included the overwall, O.U.T., 7' wall, hurdles, inverted wall, bucket carry, 6' wall, barred wire crawl, spear throw, Atlas carry, vertical cargo, Herry Can Carry, beater, Tyrolean traverse, 8' wall, armer, tire flip, monkey bars, bender, sandbag carry, stairway to Sparta, Olympus, A-frame cargo, plate drag, Z Wall, Twister, Multi Rig, Hercules Hoist, rope climb, slip wall, and fire jump.

But the Gerry can carry, according to him, was the toughest as he had to carry two gallons of mineral water in a 600-meter distance just using his bare hands.

The Hercules Hoist, too, also challenged him as he had to raise a 45-kilogram sandbag, which weighed double when it rained, by pulling a rope.

While on the course, however, he focused on his target of winning the race.

"Ang huna-huna nako Ma'am dili jud ko papilde (I thought of not losing)," he said. "Para sa akong family, sa akong mga sponsors, sa mga nagsalig sa akoang ability (For my family, sponsors, and those who believed in my ability)," Tabac, the first Asian male who finished in the top 20 of the Spartan World Championships in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

He will start training in Mount Pulag in Luzon this week in preparation for the World Highest Obstacle Course racing set on November 4 at Mount Everest in Nepal.

Tabac, born in Bayugan City, Agusan del Sur, joined the Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation two years ago after topping a series of qualifying events that saw him defeating national team members.

His last race for the year is in December in Dubai.