Cebu hopes Ironman stays

ONE of the biggest triathlon races in Asia, the Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines, may be extending its stay in Cebu, after the Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI) declared yesterday its intention to hold the race here in 2015.

The message was relayed during the thanksgiving lunch hosted by the SEI at the Laguna Garden Cafe. The SEI, the organization behind the triathlon, thanked and awarded the private and government institutions who contributed to the success of this year’s event.

The Department of Tourism (DOT-7), the Cebu City Government, Philippine National Police PRO 7, Cebu Provincial Administrator Mark Tolentino, Dr. Peter Mancao and Emergency Rescue Unit Foundation (Eruf), were recognized for their efforts. The Lapu-Lapu City officials were also awarded in a separate program yesterday.

Princess Galura, the project director of SEI, divulge that the third staging in Cebu was successful and just needed some things to be ironed out for next year.

“We want to be here and it was even shown in the Cobra Ironman 70.3 Highlights Show...We just want to improve other things, especially the roads.”

However, no contract was signed yet for next year.

“For as long as the (SEI) is here, we will assure to give our full support to them and their plans,” assured Tolentino.

The organizers will announce in the following weeks, if finalized, the details of the extension here in Cebu, and as well as the number of years it will hold the activity.

“We will also be announcing the opening of our registration (Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines) soon, and we would like to finalize the venue before we do it. We will get in touch in the coming weeks,” Galura said.

Optimistic

With road construction ongoing in Cebu in preparation for the Apec Summit next year, the organizers are optimistic that this will be completed next year.

“The possible route for next year is the existing one, but we are also considering bringing it to the northern part of Cebu,” said Galura.

Technical race director Neville Manaois said that with the activities happening in Cebu, the northern part of Cebu will be one of the options.

The Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines had its third staging last Aug. 3 and it was one for the books with 2,500 participants from six continents and 40 countries.

Three qualifiers

Three Filipinos will be racing for a cause in the 2014 Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii, on Oct. 10. William Veto qualified via a legacy slot with more than 15 70.3 Ironman races tucked under his belt, while Gadric Chunsenfu and Joseph Palisco won the slots in a lottery by World Triathlon Corp. (WTC).

These three triathlon warriors will not just race for individual glory, but will use the opportunity to raise funds and help build more houses in the GK Ironman Village in Bantayan Island, Cebu.

The SEI, in cooperation with Gawad Kalinga and professional triathletes, including champions Brent McMahon and Caroline Steffen, broke ground at the Ironman Village last Aug. 4.

Twenty houses were built and given to typhoon survivors.

The three Filipino triathletes aim to add more houses in the GK Village by thru raising funds, and help build the houses after the grueling race.

“The three triathletes will be coming to Cebu together with SEI after the World Championships to build more houses in the GK Village,” Galura earlier said.

Bantayan Island was one of the places in the country badly hit by typhoon Yolanda last year.

(Interested parties can visit www.threepinoys.sunriseevents.com.ph.)

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