Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Cebu 70.3 Report.

Hey readers - the biggest triathlon in the Philippines & possibly the most interesting sporting event (all things considered) in The Philippines went on over this past weekend in Cebu

From the time we arrived @ the airport it started to get pretty hectic, loud & tiresome for a whole weekend of festive drama! 

The Friday before the race we did a run for breakfast with the young participants of the Ironkids for for the underprivileged local school kids on the Island of Mactan! Basically, it's to encourage kids to eat breakfast before class so they are not hungry in school & can absorb the information the teachers give them!

Shot from the back!


Banjo & Jenny giving breakfast!


A wifie with the kids!

A few days later came race day, where the big positive news in the end was that Joyette  rose to the occasion & won her 3rd Filipino Elite title of the year counting Challenge Philippines & X-Terra Cebu. It was a very tight race where the top 3 Pinay Elite girls where ~10 min apart out of the water, 3 mins apart off the bike, Joyette being in 3rd & then ran her way to a nice paycheck & prestigious title by less than 1 min!


Without the other girls, Joyette would not have pushed herself to the limit & would have simply had a lesser performance!


Following in her brother's foot steps!
Picture Credit: Alaska Sportshub




Jenny showed courage because she got a high fever & severe cough right before the race, where she was even advised by some pessimists not to race - but with the right support, she toed the line, won the Pinay swim prime & placed third place Filipina Elite, but importantly, making her loved ones, students & sponsors proud by grinding it out - where a lesser human would have simply rolled over & given up...


Jenny out of the water ahead of the eventual 2nd overall pro female. 

Noemi, who was racing her first long distance triathlon, was in good position out of the water, then battled the wind on the bike with all her 42 kg’s might & then ran a solid first ever 21 klm run to give her better perspective in her young & new career in the world of endurance sport!


Photo credit: ShutterFrog

My Elite 2 boys where 1-2 Pinoy out of the water ~ 3 & 4 min behind the 1st group of pro males in a wavy 1 loop open water sea swim! Out on the bike, they did what they trained to do, ride in a non-drafting pace line ideally with some male pro's or pro females.

Well they where just the 2 of them out there, just like in training, but they where then seen a bit too close to each other during their 'switch offs' by one of the draft busters on what would be known as an exiting bike course that tested guts, skin, bones, rubber, carbon fiber, ect.

They were given a warning.

Jonard then got a puncture @ the 80 klm point by going over a pot hole @ 45 kph, of which blew out the side wall of his tire, then while rolling to a stop on the rim, one of the spokes broke on my race wheel, making the wheel 'potato chip' & un-rid-able since it's a low spoke race wheel...He had to get a ride back with a motor cycle...

After that, Banjo was a bit shaken up, lost his rythym & quietly behind him, Assad Attamimi, one of the top age group triathletes in the world, had slowly creeped up behind him, where suddenly Banjo received a yellow card drafting penalty for ridding to close to Assad, somebody he's not used to ridding with...

It's an honest mistake, I observed them both over extended efforts in training, where they tend to swerve, lose distance & get a bit to close to each other as then get tired or their blood sugar drops...It's simply part of racing on the edge!

Many experienced triathletes have un-intentionally drifted in the draft zone of those in front of them, THE ACCORDION effect goes often: at the bottom of hills, turning into a head wind, before 180 degree turns, in/our of aid stations, when the others in front stop pedaling to grab a drink between their legs, when some have a feed of nutrition, sometimes when one over takes lapped riders ridding wide, ect.


Another good swim this year for Jonard but some bad luck to follow on the bike...
Photo credit: Fiktures Photography

The big predicament arose when Banjo did not stop @ the penalty box to serve his 4 min penalty after his yellow card, he thought it was only a stop & go penalty, it was in his first time in such a situation, so he kept racing & finished 2nd place Pinoy at the line only to be informed of his DQ about 1 hour after the race...

Photo Credit: Race Day

I’m not a religious person, but after we accepted the DQ just before the ‘meet the champs’ press-con, we walked emotionally to the chapel 50m’s away, as we heard the announcements over the micro-phone. Out of no-where Jonard walked by, we simply sat there & had a moment looking at baby Jesus.

1 year ago today was Banjo’s best day - today was his worst...

It's important to look @ the silver lining in these situations, rules are rules & bad-luck is bad luck, it's the same for everybody, especially when racing for money! I'm convinced these hard circumstances will give the boys a sturdier character for future competition & compel them to be smarter in the heat of racing!

Lastly, I want to give a shout out to Augusto Benedicto who won the Filipino Elite title for the Men, bellow is one of the coolest training pictures I own, which was taken in Subic Bay TeamTBB spring camp of 2008!

He was always the most friendly, enthusiastic & hard working of that group - im happy he get less nose bleeds when he speaks English over the microphone - Banjo & Jonard should stride for the same - ahahahahaha!

Photo Credit: Ryan Pile

Anyway, after about 7 months of having athletes in my house,  they have returned to the province for a month, to recharge & see their loved ones, as me & Joyette get some time to relax & focus on her IM debut @ Ironman in Langkawi!