Steffen, Atkinson Dominate the 2013 Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines


2013 Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Philippines WPro and MPro Champions Caroline Steffen and Courtney Atkinson

2013 Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Philippines WPro and MPro Champions Caroline Steffen and Courtney Atkinson

It’s a run away win for both the Alaska Team TBB’s Caroline Steffen and the Australian Courtney Atkinson who took the 2013 Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines WPro and MPro Division top spots by storm. 

Caroline Steffen clocked in at 04:16:12, crossing the finish line with an 11 minute lead against the second placer Bree Wee, while Courtney Atkinson finished off the race in 03:58:07, with just a little over a minute lead from the 2012 Champion Pete Jacobs.

The swim start was literally bumpy due to heavy rains and winds the entire night prior to the race. The inclement weather that Sunday morning of August 4 did not deter the strong – willed champs, Filipino elites, age groupers and celebrity triathletes from taking on the challenge of the much awaited IronMan 70.3 Philippines. Coming to the race venue, a lot of them had to be on foot because of the traffic build up leading to Shangri – La Mactan. 

In the Photo (from left): WTC CEO Andrew Messick,2nd Place Bree Wee, 5th Place Monica Torres, Champ Caroline Steffen, 4th Place Jacqui Slack, 3rd Place Belinda Granger; Lapu Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza, SEI CEO Fred Uytengsu & Cobra Energy Drink Brand Mgr. Jeff Mendoza

In the Photo (from left): WTC CEO Andrew Messick,2nd Place Bree Wee, 5th Place Monica Torres, Champ Caroline Steffen, 4th Place Jacqui Slack, 3rd Place Belinda Granger; Lapu Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza, SEI CEO Fred Uytengsu & Cobra Energy Drink Brand Mgr. Jeff Mendoza

Coming off from the swim course, the windy bike ride may have been a challenge for the racing champs because of wind resistance, but Atkinson made his first U – turn at the 29th kilometre way ahead of the other pros. The second pack of racers included Pete Jacobs, Chris McCormack, Brent McMahon, David Dellow, Josh Rix, Anthony Devos, Ben Allen, and Frederik Croneberg. The powerful quads of Steffen were all she needed to make the great lead on from her contemporaries. She was in the third pack of racers, who were all males. She was indeed living up to her monicker, Xena. Racing up on the second spot was Bree Wee, followed by Belinda Granger, Jacqui Slack and Philippines’ Monica Torres, who was competing in her first ever 70.3 as a Pro. The 90-kilometre bike ride transitioned to the 21 kilometre run course along the Punta Engaño Road. 

In the Photo (from left): WTC CEO Andrew Messick, 2nd Place Pete Jacobs, 5th Place Brent McMahon, Champ Courtney Atkinson, 4th Place Chris McCormack, 3rd Place David Dellow; Lapu Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza, SEI CEO Fred Uytengsu & Cobra Energy Drink Brand Mgr. Jeff Mendoza

In the Photo (from left): WTC CEO Andrew Messick, 2nd Place Pete Jacobs, 5th Place Brent McMahon, Champ Courtney Atkinson, 4th Place Chris McCormack, 3rd Place David Dellow; Lapu Lapu City Mayor Paz Radaza, SEI CEO Fred Uytengsu & Cobra Energy Drink Brand Mgr. Jeff Mendoza

All participants had to make a couple of loops to complete the run course. Courtney Atkinson consistently held his position in the top spot after completing his second U – turn, up to the finish line. Catching up for the second place was Pete Jacobs, Alaska Team TBB’s David Dellow ended up on the third spot, followed by Chris McCormack and Brent McMahon for the fourth and fifth places, respectively. Caroline Steffen remained strong maintaining her lead among the WPros, and even gave Jenny Rose Guerrero, Alaska Team TBB’s Filipino WElite, a little push at some point along the run course. Bree Wee locked in on her second spot. And even while on the race, she gave one participant who was already walking some boost by telling him to keep going. Belinda Granger was also holding on to the third spot, with Jacqui Slack and Monica Torres taking the fourth and fifth spots, respectively. Each of them maintaining a significant lead from the other.


Filipino Elites

Filipino WElite 2nd Place Jenny Guerrero and Filipino MElite Champion Banjo Norte (rightmost), with Alaska Team TBB Manager Alex Bok (middle)

Filipino WElite 2nd Place Jenny Guerrero and Filipino MElite Champion Banjo Norte (rightmost), with Alaska Team TBB Manager Alex Bok (middle)

Despite being relatively new in the Filipino Elite Men’s category, Banjo Norte of Alaska Team TBB clocked in at 04:26:44, beating the more seasoned Filipino triathletes – 2012 Champion August Benedicto, and John Phillip Duenas, with a finish time of 04:32:38 and 04:33:18, respectively. 

Among the Filipino Women Elite, Allesandra Araullo – Gonzalez emerged as the top finisher with a time of 05:05:33. Taking the second place was Jenny Rose Guerrero, crossing the finish line in 05:20:02. Ani de Leon – Brown filled the third spot with a finish time of 05:22:43. 


Alasaka Team TBB

Alaska Team TBB, which was formed in 2012, was well represented in both the Pro and Filipino Elite categories. The Pros category was participated in by Caroline Steffen, David Dellow and resident coach Matt O’Halloran while the Filipino Elite was joined in by Jenny Guerrero, Dhill Anderson Lee and Banjo Norte.

Coach Matt is proud of the protegés for standing out among their contemporaries. Though not winning any spot in the Filipino Elite category, Dhill Anderson Lee won the Swim Time bonus, and he is set to work more on his runs. Jenny shared that she was already on the verge of giving up and would already wanted to walk during the last leg of the race. Teary – eyed, she shared, “My family was my motivation to keep going.” And her perseverance really paid off.

Banjo Norte, on his first IronMan podium finish, was “really grateful for all the children who lined up along the streets cheering for the triathletes.”

Alaska Team TBB (from left): Professional Triathlete and Coach Matt O'Halloran, David Dellow, Caroline Steffen, Filipino Elites Banjo Norte, Dhill Anderson Lee & Jenny Guerrero

Alaska Team TBB (from left): Professional Triathlete and Coach Matt O’Halloran, David Dellow, Caroline Steffen, Filipino Elites Banjo Norte, Dhill Anderson Lee & Jenny Guerrero

World-famous and the Philippines’ pride apl.de.ap of The Black Eyed Peas participated in this year’s Ironman 70.3 Philippines, who competed with his relay team. Though considered as legally blind (in US standards), he went out to show that physical challenges can’t stop a person from achieving his dreams. Other celebrities who participated in the event were Piolo Pascual, Matteo Guidicelli, Isabelle Daza, Erwan Heusaff, and Drew Arellano. Tessa Prieto-Valdes, who competed in the relay category last year, was back in the game in the individual age group category.

The awarding ceremonies followed at the Shangri-La Mactan grounds, where Top Finishers in the Pro, Filipino Elite, CEO, Age Group and Relay categories were recognized. World – renowned furniture designer Kenneth Cobonpue designed this years Winners’ Trophies and Finisher’s Medal. The even wrapped up with an after-event party held at Mövenpick Hotel.

Here are the Top Winners:

Top Winners

MPro

WPro

1st Place Courtney Atkinson 03:58:07 Caroline Steffen 04:16:12
2nd Place Pete Jacobs 03:59:09 Bree Wee 04:27:49
3rd Place David Dellow 04:02:22 Belinda Granger 04:33:50
4th Place Chris McCormack 04:03:15 Jacqui Slack 04:39:31
5th Place Brent McMahon 04:04:05 Monica Torres 04:52:08

Filipino MElite

Filipino WElite

1st Place Banjo Norte 04:26:44 Allesandra Araullo-Gonzalez 05:05:33
2nd Place August Benedicto 04:32:38 Jenny Guerrero 05:20:02
3rd Place John Phillip Duenas 04:33:18 Ani Karina Brown 05:22:43

For a complete list of winners in the Individual and Relay categories, please visit the following links:
Cobra Energy Drink 70.3 IronMan Philippines Individual Official Results
Cobra Energy Drink 70.3 IronMan Philippines Relay Official Results

Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines 2013 was participated in by 2,150 triathletes from 35 countries. Ironman 70.3 is a triathlon event with a total distance of 70.3 miles (113km) covering 1.2 mile (1.9km) swim, 56 mile (90km) bike ride and 13.1 mile (21km) run. It was a race with a feel of a festival. An event that the Cebuanos and the global triathlon community is looking forward to.

For more race details, please log on to: http://www.ironman703phil.com/

Follow Alaska Sports Hub on Twitter: @AlaskaSportshub

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Alaska IronKids: Helping Shape the Future of Triathlon in the Philippines


Alaska IronKids AG 13 to 14 Top Winners

In the photo (left to right) Standing: Alaska IronKids AG 13 to 14 Top Winners – Third Place: Brent Valelo & Maria Margarita delos Reyes, First Place: Arno Baetz & Shaia Ruth Uy, Second Place: Justin Liam Chiongbian & Alexandra Leather. Seated: Triathlon Pros: Jacqui Slack, Ben Allen, Alaska Team TBB’s Matt O’Halloran, Belinda Granger, Pete Jacobs, Justin Granger, & WTC CEO Andrew Messick

Some 200 junior triathletes registered to the 2013 Alaska IronKids held at the Shagri-La Mactan on August 3, 2013. And as the traditions, participants were treated to a kiddie carboloading party themed as Super Heroes. 

Before the clock hit the hour of 6 in the morning, the young champs have already geared up for the day’s race. The check in area was visually busy. In one spot, a coach was giving last minute instructions to the some of the children. TriKids with their bikes in tow were in queue to check their bikes in, while parents and close relations were nearby to provide support. Not just support I would say. Some of them were even more excited than the participants! 

The participants were grouped in two waves. Wave 1 included the 11 to 12 and 13 to 14 year olds; Wave 2 included the 6 to 8 and the 9 to 10 year olds. At 6:15, Wave 1 participants were called for the final race briefing before hitting the open water swim at 6:30. The race briefing was conducted by Alaska IronKids Triathlon Race Director, and Triathlet herself, Coach Ani de Leon-Brown. The race route included a 300m swim, 8km bike and 2km run. 

From the swim course to T1, to the bike course. The race started with the 300 m open water swim. The young triathletes competed as kids, but with the heart of the pros. Swimming out of the water, they proceeded to the transition area 1 where their bikes were stationed. Mounting on their bikes like the big guys do, they pedaled through the 8 kilometre stretch of the bike course. They perfectly know when to shift their bike’s gear, speed up and slow down when making a turn – that kind of thing. The bike course ended at the transition area, where the racers dismount off their bikes, put on their running gear for the 2 kilometre run. 

The morning started with a nice overcast, which made racing a lot better. The first pack of the young champs had already crossed the finish line a little past half an hour after the gun start. By half past seven, the slight drizzle dropped in, which eventually turned into a heavy downpour coupled with strong winds. At this time, there were still participants in the run course. And I happen to be at the vicinity of the run course. 

Photos from Left to Right: Swim Start area, IronKids at the swim start, Bike Check In area, IronKids at the Bike course, Participant still running during the heavy rain

Photos from Left to Right: Swim Start area, IronKids at the swim start, Bike Check In area, IronKids at the Bike course, Participant still running during the heavy rain

As soon as it rained, I ran to the nearest tent for shelter. I was a few meters behind one runner, who stopped for shelter under a tree. Probably realising that he was in a race, he continued to run towards the finish line. While the rain poured down, another participant came into view when she made a left turn, and made her way to the finish line. 

And due to the inclement weather that morning, for the safety of the participants, the race for Wave 2 was cancelled. It may have been difficult for the organisers to make that decision, but may have even been harder for the participants to accept. We saw some of them fell into tears when they learned that they won’t be racing anymore. 

While waiting for the awarding ceremony for the Wave 1 Top Finishers (11 to 12 and 13 to 14 year old age groups), seats were provided at the Alaska Media Center to accommodate the participants, finishers and their parents. And to while away their time, the young champs settled with their iPads while others were sharing their story of the race. I could say that the Ironkids are generally the most behaved children I’ve known, compared to other kids of their age. 

I had the chance to speak with IronKids participant Everly Macalalad of Team TriGear. “I was not able to race because the event was already cancelled,” she said in her very calm voice. And I can sense that there was a trace of sadness in her voice. But I know she understood why the race was cancelled. 

Alaska IronKids AG 11 to 12 Winners

In the photo (left to right) Standing: Alaska IronKids AG 11 to 12 Winners – Third Place: Samantha Borlain & Nathan Nalo, First Place: Bambam Manglicmot & Justine Lauren Plaza, Second Place: Craig Joshua Uy & Nicole Danielle Eijansantos. Seated: Triathlon Pros: Alaska Team TBB’s Matt O’Halloran, Pete Jacobs and Justin Granger

Awarding Ceremony. The awarding ceremony commenced around 10 in the morning as soon as all the top three finishers in the 11 to 12 and 13 to 14 age groups have come in. The young champs were in all smiles as they received their medals and gift packs from Alaska and other sponsors. And how can they not smile? None other than the triathlon Pro Champions – Alaska Team TBB’s Matt O’Halloran, Ben Allen, Jacqui Slack, Belinda Granger, Pete Jacobs, Justin Granger, and WTC CEO Andrew Messick excitedly handed their medals and gift packs! 

Here are the Top Three Finishers:

AG 13 to 14

Boys

Girls

1st Place Arno Baetz, 29:58.5 Shaia Ruth Uy, 34:31.3
2nd Place Justin Liam Chiongbian, 30:05.1 Alexandra Leather, 34:34.5
3rd Place Brent Valelo, 30:21.6 Maria Margarita delos Reyes, 34:49.4

AG 11 to 12

 

Boys

Girls

1st Place Bambam Manglicmot, 31:38 Lauren Justine Plaza, 33:01.3
2nd Place Craig Joshua Uy, 33:30.6 Nicole Danielle Eijansantos, 35:42.5
3rd Place Nathan Nalo, 34:08.3 Samantha Borlain, 35:53.6

For a complete list of finishers, please click the following links:
Alaska IronKids AG 13-14
Alaska IronKids AG 11-12

Refreshing Alaska Sweet Milk and Alaska ChocoMilk were served. For those who preferred a hot drink, coffee with Alaska KremTop was made available.

Catch the next Alaska IronKids Triathlon in October at the Palms Country Club in Alabang.

Stay updated by logging on to www.ironkidsphil.com.
Follow us on Twitter: @AlaskaSportshub

5i50 Subic – It’s Twice the Fun in the Philippines!


The Champs (from left to right): Ben Allen, Luke McKenzie, Jacqui Slack, Belinda Granger, Michelle Gailey, Fredrik Croneberg & Justin Granger

2013 5i50 Champs (from left to right): Ben Allen, Luke McKenzie, Jacqui Slack, Belinda Granger, Michelle Gailey, Fredrik Croneberg & Justin Granger

Indeed, triathlon is more fun in the Philippines. But for Australia’s Pro triathlete Belinda Granger, triathlon is twice the fun in the Philippines. Leading the Women Pro category at the swim start, Belinda took home her second Championship Title in this year’s 5i50, clocking in at 02:17:33. 

Being a first timer in the Philippines did not deter the Australian Luke McKenzie to bag his first 5i50 Philippines Championship title in the Men Pro category, crossing the finish line in 01:59:25. 

Despite the heavy downpour the night before the race, pros, elites, celebrity triathletes and age groupers have massively gathered as early as 5am at the Hanjin Port to have their body markings done, and to be ready for the swim start. The first wave came off at half past 6, which included Alaska Team TBB’s Mathieu O’Halloran, Luke McKenzie, Ben Allen, Chris McCormack, Justin Granger, Fredrick Croneberg, Michael Murphy, Luke Gillmer, Belinda Granger, Michelle Gailey, Jacqui Slack and Monica Torres who were competing in the Pro Category. Monica Torres debuted as Filipino Pro in this year’s 5i50. Dhill Anderson Lee, Banjo Norte, Jenny Rose Guerrero, Rochelle Tan, Kim Mangrobang, Nikko Huelgas, John Leerams Chicaco and Jonard Saim, who were among the Filipino Elites. 

As soon as the gun start for the first wave sounded off, I asked my motorbike rider to take me to the swim out area, roughly a couple of kilometres from the swim start area. I stood by the railings waiting as to who swims out first. Matt O’Halloran and Belinda Granger led the Pro in the swim course; Alaska Team TBB protégé Dhill Anderson Lee and Kim Mangrobang led the Filipino Elites. 

Chris "Macca" McCormack at the Transition 1, 5i50 Philippines

Chris “Macca” McCormack at the Transition 1, 5i50 Philippines

Soon, the pros and elites were on their bike. The 40 kilometre bike course was very technical with its uphill and downhill slopes. Part of the course was a bike ride at the Subic Airport. Luke McKenzie took the leading spot among the male pros. Belinda on the other hand confidently maintained her positioned as the leading Female Pro. Coming from the downhill ride, the riders proceeded to Transition 2 at SBECC for the run leg.

The 10 kilometre run course was generally flat. In her past interviews, Belinda Granger admitted that she isn’t a fast runner. But her leading mileage in both the swim and bike courses helped her maintain her position, and so was Luke McKenzie. Ben Allen and Michael Murphy was catching up on McKenzie, while Michelle Gailey locked in on her speed in the hope of getting even with Granger. Jacqui Slack was just behind Gailey. 

As the pros competed among themselves, the Filipino Elites showed their inherent skills during the entire duration of the race. Dhill Anderson of Alaska Team TBB recorded 18 minutes 43 seconds in the swim leg, Jonard Saim completed the bike course in 1 hour 8 minutes and 3 seconds; and Philip Dueñas, despite not winning any of the top three spots, completed his 10k run in 34 minutes and 45 seconds. Philip recorded the fasted run leg in this year’s race. Among the Women Filipino Elites, Jenny Rose Guerrero completed her 10k run in 50 minutes and 51 seconds while Kim Mangrobang completed the swim course in 21 minutes and 12 seconds. 

Alaska Team TBB: Jenny Rose Guerrero, Dhill Anderson Lee, Marc Altura

Alaska Team TBB: Jenny Rose Guerrero, Dhill Anderson Lee, Marc Altura

The Coach: Matt O’Halloran

Matt O’Halloran, resident coach of Alaska Team TBB, though he won the Alaska Swim Time Bonus, has not won any of the top three spots. Yet, he was a Champion in his own right.  The young protégés he was coaching did really well in the race. Jenny Rose Guerrero brought home the Championship Title in the Women Filipino Elite Category. She was also the recipient of the Oakley Time Bonus. Banjo Norte finished fourth among the Men Filipino Elites. Dhill Anderson Lee was also a recipient of the Alaska Swim Time Bonus. 

Marc Altura and Martin Torres, also from Alaska Team TBB, competed in the 15 – 19 age group category.

2013 5i50 Finisher's Medals & Trophies

2013 5i50 Finisher’s Medals & Trophies

Leading this year’s list of winners are:
Men Pro:
1. Luke McKenzie – 01:59:25
2. Ben Allen – 02:02:40
3. M
ichael Murphy – 02:05:46

Women Pro
1. Belinda Granger – 02:17:33
2. Michelle Gailey – 02:24:09
3. Jacqui Slack – 02:26:05

Men Filipino Elite
1. John Chicano – 02:09:45
2. Jonard Saim – 02:10:29
3. Nikko Huelgas – 02:11:00

Women Filipino Elite
1. Jenny Rose Guerrero – 02:41:48
2. Rochelle Tan – 02:52:56
3. Kim Mangrobang – 03:03:20

At the media center, I had the opportunity to chat with Jacqui Slack after the race. Despite having a couple of flat tires in the bike course, she was in all smiles saying that “it’s always good to be here (competing at 5i50 Subic).” Rest assured, she’ll be back next year, hoping for more good luck to come her way.

Due to some challenges he encountered with his bike while at the bike leg of the race, world champion Chris “Macca” McCormack had no choice but to quit the race. And while most sports cater to the able-bodied individuals, triathlon events such as 5i50 give opportunities to physically  challenged individuals to compete.

Philippine Triathlon Team Captain Nikko Huelgas admitted that being his first time to compete in 5i50, gave him some “good pressure” that makes him “want to work hard.” He won Third Place in the Filipino Elite Category.

Noelle "Kikay Runner" de Guzman, Solenn Heusaff, Isabelle Daza, Erwan Heusaff, Drew Arellano & Nikko Huelgas

Noelle “Kikay Runner” de Guzman, Solenn Heusaff, Isabelle Daza, Erwan Heusaff, Drew Arellano & Nikko Huelgas

At the race venue, I bumped into the pretty Noelle “Kikay Runner” de Guzman, who looked so fresh after the race! And there was Erwan Heusaff, Isabelle Daza and Solenn Heusaff and Drew Arellano. Also, spotted at the event was Jeff Lo of Pinoyfitness.

5i50 is a triathlon event composed of 1.5km swim, 40km bike ride and 10km run. The event was held in Subic Exhibition and Convention Center on June 23, 2013 by Sunrise Events. 

For a full list of winners, please visit: www.5150philippines.com. For race updates, please follow us on Twitter: @AlaskaSportshub

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