|Eric Panigue edges Irineo Raquin for the|
Manila qualifying title on Sundayin
Pasay City. (photo by Jonel Mendoza)
A record-shattering 42,214 runners joined the country's premier footrace, marking the largest number of participants in a single race in the history of the MILO Marathon.
Along with other 42K qualifiers, Panique and Raterta each took home a cash prize of Php 50,000, a trophy and a coveted spot at the National Finals in December for their respective victories. To increase the level of competition this year, MILO will sponsor this season's MILO Marathon King and Queen to the 2014 Paris Marathon next April.
28-year old Panique settled the score towards the finish line and clocked in at a swift 2:30:20.51, beating Condura Skyway Marathon 2013 Filipino champion Irineo Raquin (2:30:20.73) with just 22 milliseconds to spare. Last year's MILO Marathon Manila Eliminations champion Jeson Agravante placed a distant third with a time of 2:41:55.
|Raterta (left) and Paniqui lift their|
trophies after winning the 42K race.
"I beat Raquin by a mere inch and I feel very fortunate to have done so. We had kept a close distance since the 25th kilometer and maintained our pace until the last second," he said. Panique said he has yet to decide whether he will be competing at the 37th MILO Marathon National Finals or at the Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar.
In the distaff side, Raterta crossed the finish line at 3:14:17, way ahead of 2012 MILO Marathon National Finals 42K women's second runner-up Jennylyn Nobleza (3:23:27) and Geralden Sealza (3:32:40).
"I've kept a fast pace from the first few hours until the last 10 kilometers of the track. It was a very challenging race, not only in terms of route, but also because I was running alongside some of the country's finest runners," said Raterta. As a mother of three, she shares that her fervor for running has kept her family close. "My husband is a former elite runner who shares the same passion for running that I have. We also try to encourage our children to be active in sports and to always be humble and level-headed." Raterta's daughter Leonalyn placed first in today's 3K division race at an impressive 11:12.
In the 21K race, Richard Salaño (1:14:36) and Monica Torres (1:29:57) won their respective divisions and each received a cash prize of Php 10,000, a trophy and a spot in the finale.
|Raterta finishing by her lonesome|
in the female category.
"The rise of local talent among the 42,214 marathoners in today's race launches bright possibilities for the finale. We are looking forward to seeing an all-Filipino finish in December to bring pride to our home soil at the Paris Marathon next year."
With the invaluable support of MILO Marathon runners and partners, the Help Give Shoes advocacy, provided a total of 1,000 pairs and donated to beneficiary schools today in Manila, bringing the total shoe count to 27,200.
Manuel Quezon City Elementary School, San Diego Elementary School QC, Dagat Dagatan Elementary School Navotas, Hulo Elementary School Mandaluyong, Fourth Estate Elementary School Paranaque, North Bay Blvd. Elementary School Navotas, East Rembo Elementary School Makati, Amado Reyes Elementary School Mandaluyong, Cayetano Arellano High School and La Paz Elementary School Makati were among the advocacy's beneficiaries.
The qualifying race will continue in Iloilo on August 4, before advancing to Dumaguete (August 11), Tagbilaran (September 15), Cebu (September 22), Cagayan de Oro (September 29), Butuan (October 6), Davao (October 13), General Santos (October 20), Baguio (November 3), Dagupan (November 10), Tarlac (November 17) and Angeles (November 24). The 37th MILO Marathon National Finals will then be on December 8 at the SM Mall of Asia grounds.