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METROPOLITAN AUTHORITY

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Subic packs in 900 athletes for 5i50 triathlon
Jun 24, 2013

SUBIC BAY FREEPORT - Close to a thousand triathletes, including elite contenders from other countries, conquered on Sunday the 2013 Century Tuna 5i50 Triathlon, acknowledged as the biggest Olympic-distance race in the country today.

Organizers said that local and international triathletes faced the daunting challenge of completing a difficult long-distance course with the Subic Bay providing a picturesque backdrop for the event.

The elite field was represented by participants from 23 countries, including top contenders from the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, the United States, Singapore, France, Germany, Taiwan, Japan and the Philippines.

Former Ironman champion Luke McKenzie topped the men's pro elite division after completing the course that involved three legs: a 1.5-kilometer swim leg, followed by a 40-kilometer bike leg, and then a 10-kilometer run course.

The Australian champion finished the race in 1 hour 59 minutes and 25 seconds.

McKenzie was followed by Xterra Off Road Triathlon champion Ben Allen who clocked in at 2:02:40 and by Australian triathlete Michael Murphy who finished with 2:05:46.

Meanwhile, Belinda Granger finished first for the women's pro elite with 2:17:33, followed by Michelle Gailey with 2:24:09 and Jaqui Slack with 2:26:05.

John Leerams Chicano led the local bets in the Filipino men's elite with 2:09:45 and finished fifth overall.

Chicano was followed by Jonard Saim with 2:10:29 and Olympic hopeful Nikko Huelgas with 2:11:00.

Another local bet, Monica Torres, finished fourth in the women's pro elite with 2:26:19.

This is the second year that Subic has hosted the 5i50 triathlon. Last year's race was voted by triathletes as the second best triathlon event in the Philippines for 2012.

The Century Tuna 5i50 triathlon has become one of the major sports events held in the Subic Bay Freeport, as Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority chairman Roberto Garcia has put his focus on developing Subic as a premier sporting destination in the country.

"The 2013 edition of the Century Tuna 5i50 Triathlon not only featured a scenic and challenging route but also enjoyed a substantial increase of 52 percent in terms of participants, compared to last year'," SBMA deputy administrator for tourism Raul Marcelo said.

According to Marcelo, with SBMA chairman Garcia's focus on sports tourism and environmental protection, Subic Bay has become an environment- and sports-friendly destination. (30)


Hundreds of Triathletes from over 20 countries take part in the swimming leg of the Century Tuna 5i50 Triathlon.

Hundreds of Triathletes from over 20 countries take part in the swimming leg of the Century Tuna 5i50 Triathlon.


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