MANILA, July 31, 2011— Two-time MILO® Marathon Queen Jho-Ann Banayag led a 1-2-3 finish by the Filiipina bets in the Metro Manila elimination of the 35th National MILO® Marathon, which started and ended at the SM Mall of Asia grounds in Pasay City.
The 29-year-old Banayag of Compostela Valley left behind RP training pool teammate Mary Grace de los Santos in the first 18 kilometers along Gil Puyat Ave. going to the Fort to finish the full 42.195-km race in 2:53:37. “I could not improve my best time because of the rain–the course was slippery at times and my damp shoes made my feet heavier,” said the Philippine Army private first class Banayag.
Organizers have put a Php 20,000 bonus prize to the first female runner who breaks Jhoan Banayag’s MILO® Marathon women’s course record of 2:48:16. With this, Banayag looks to better her performance in the finals and break her own record.
She added that the Philippine Amateur Track and Field Association (PATAFA) is considering the MILO® Marathon as a qualifier for inclusion to the RP national team. “I really hope to make it to the RP team and do a repeat of my 2009 Laos Sea Games marathon victory,” added Banayag, the Milo National Finals champion in 2005 and 2006.”
De los Santos of Cebu settled for second with a time of 2:55:10 while Ailene Tolentino was a far third with a clocking of 3:11:32, denying Kenyan runners, Susan Jemutai and Peris Poywo of a chance to grab the limelight. Jemutai managed a 3:11:43 finish for fourth and Poywo finished seventh in 3:48:29.
It’s a different story on the men’s side, as 24-year-old Tallam of Item, Kenya made his presence felt when he crossed the finish line all alone in 2:28:42 besting Eric Panique for the crown in the elite men’s category. Panique timed 2:31:16 for second followed by Ireneo Raquim for third with a clocking of 2:32:26 and Elmer Sabal at fourth in 2:33:15. Benjamin Kipzaki also of Kenya finished fifth with a time of 2:48:14. “My strategy was to maintain my pace on the first half of the race, then I sped up to gain my lead from there. I think my training joining different marathons across Southeast Asia helped boost my performance in the race,” said 24 year old Tallam.
Aside from making it to the National Finals on Dec. 11 in Manila, both Banayag and Tallam earned P50,000 cash each, while runners up, Panique and De los Santos received P30,000 and P20,000 each for Raquim and Tolentino.
Rafael Poliquit (1:13:58) and Nhea Ann Barcena (1:33:48) won the men and women’s ’s 21-km category respectively, while Milbert Nabuab dominated the men’s 10-km race in 36:25 and Mars Devera for the distaff side with a time of 44:25. For the 10-km run, Manolo Refugia (16:47) and Catherine Bristol (22:06) topped the men and women’s 5-km run respectively and for the 3-km kiddie run, Kim Sayrio Dela Cruz (0:11:32) and Leonalyn Raterta (0:12:22), daughter of Luisa Raterta, ruled the boys’ and girls’ division respectively.
The 35th National MILO® Marathon heightens its commitment of building champions in sports and in life by continuing its advocacy of providing running shoes to underprivileged children. Last year, a total of 4,200 pairs were donated to public school children nationwide. This season, in line with Nestle’s celebration of 100 years, the advocacy aims to give 100 pairs of shoes to 100 students from 100 schools nationwide—a total of 10,000 more shoes donated.
Nestle officials led by Milo Sports Events Assistant Vice President Patricio Goc-Ong expressed elation over the good turn out despite heavy rains. “Today’s race saw hosts of local and foreign runners, families, friends and a number of running groups even with drizzles here and there. This is a delightful indication on the still increasing fanfare for running in the country and strong support for the marathon’s “Help Give Shoes” advocacy.
A total of 1,000 pairs of shoes were given to students of 10 Manila schools, including Pasay City Science High School, Caruhatan National High School, Fort Bonifacio High School, Tatalon Elementary School, Gen. Pio Del Pilar High School, Carlos L. Albert High School, Benigno Aquino High School, Kalayaan National High School, Gen. Ricardo Papa Memorial High School and Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School as part of Milo’s “Help Give Shoes” advocacy.
Some 115 runners including 17 women met the age group qualifying time and will be joining other regional leg winners Mercy Taypoc, Reynaldo Pascua, Hernani Sore, Jessa Mangsat, Robeno Javier, Jujet de Asis and Geraldine Sealza in the Finals at the SM Mall of Asia on December 11.
From the Manila race, organized by RunRio Inc., the 17-leg eliminations will shift to Southern Luzon in Batangas on August 21, Puerto Princesa on August 28, Naga on Sept 4 and San Pablo on Sept 11. Then the Milo Marathon heads to Ilo-Ilo (Sept 18), Bacolod (Sept 25), Cebu City (Oct 2), Tagbilaran (Oct 9), Cagayan De Oro (Oct 16), Butuan (Oct 23), General Santos (Oct 30), Davao (Nov 6) with Manila Finals slated on December 11.
The National MILO® Marathon is made possible by event sponsors, Bayview Hotel, Powerade, Summit, Timex, Air21, Department of Education and SM Mall of Asia.
For more info on the National MILO® Marathon and how to be part of its advocacy, visit the exciting new MILO® website via www.milo.com.ph or be a fan of MILO® Philippines on Facebook
Source: MILO® website