The Future is Bright for Philippine Athletics Team as they brought home 5 gold medals, 7 silver medals and 9 bronze medals at the recently concluded South East Asian Games in Singapore. That’s 8 more medals from the 13 medals it won 2 years ago. It doesn’t stop there as PATAFA aims to send more qualifiers to the 2016 Rio Olympics aside from Eric Cray who already qualified for the event. I hope this is the start of another Golden Era in the field of Athletics especially with private companies like L Timestudio and Veloci actively supporting the athletes.
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- L Time Studio and Veloci Time Supports Team Philippines – Athletics for the SEA Games
Over the last few weeks, we’ve witnessed every nail-biting moments as our Athletes went all out to be a medalist in the SEA Games and be able to have our flag hosted up high on every wins we have. We took a while in our busy schedule to check on the results and the medal tally. We screamed with each wins. We felt the pain of defeat and failure. Win or lose, we stood by our athletes as they competed at the SEA Games. The Philippine Athletic Team was proud to contribute 21 medals with a haul of 5 gold medals, 7 silver medals and 9 bronze medals as follows:
- Eric Shauwn Cray (100m with a time of 10.25s, New Philippine Record and 400m hurdles with a time of 49.40s, New SEA Games Record)
- Caleb John Christian Stuart (Hammer Throw with a distance of 65.63m, New SEA Games Record)
- Kayla Anise Richardson (100m with a time of 11.76s)
- Christopher Ulboc Jr. (3000m Steeplechase with a time of 8:59:07)
- Ernest John Obiena (Pole Vault with a distance of 5.25M
- Jesson Ramil Cid (Decathlon with 7,065 points)
- Mary Joy Tabal (Marathon with a time of 3:04:39)
- Kayla Anise Richardson (200m with a time of 23.71s)
- Mervin Guarte (800m with a time of 1:51.47 and 1500m with a time of 3:48.06)
- Archand Christian Bagsit, Edgardo Alejan Jr., Ryan Bigyan and Joan Caido (4×400 with a time of 3:06.84)
- Marestella Torres (Long Jump with a distance of 6.41m)
- Janry Unbas (Decathlon with 6,796 points)
- Rosie Villarito (Javelin Throw with a distance of 48.44m)
- Riezel Buenaventure (Pole Vault with a distance of 3.60m)
- Patrick Ma. Unso(110m Hurdles with a time of 14.12s)
- Narcisa Atienza(Heptathlon with 4,798 points)
- Donovant Arriola Jr.(Long Jump with a distance of 7.51m)
- Edgardo Alejan Jr.(400m with a time of 47.08s)
- Jessica Lyn Barnard (3,000m Steeplechase with a time of 10:36.90)
“The name of the game is total medals. It’s how many times our athletes reach the podium. Each time we win a medal, it is a shining tribute to our country and we see our flag raised in victory and pride”, says Philip Ella Juico, President of PATAFA.
The Athletics team gave the country 21 medals, which was a 62% improvement from the medal haul in the last SEA Games. Led by double Gold medalist and double games record setter Eric Shaun Cray (100 Meter Dash and 400 Meter hurdles) and last day of competition heroics of Christopher Ulboc in the 300m Steeplechase, the Philippines Athletics team highlighted a number of outstanding performances by young up-and-comers who stand poised to represent the country in upcoming international competitions such as the Olympics and World Championships.
“Eric Cray is already qualified for the Olympics in Rio, and is ranked top 10 in the world in the 400 Hurdles. This is a huge achievement to have a bona-fide qualifier from the Philippines. We are targeting to have perhaps 2-3 more before the 2016 Olympic Games open in Rio”, says Juico.
If PATAFA achieves this, it will be a complete turnaround from past years where the country’s representatives in track and field were mainly exempt (non-qualified) athletes. Possible bets to make the cut before Rio 2016 and join Cray are young pole vaulter E.J Obiena, who continues to smash the national record on a monthly basis; and, 2-time Olympian Marestella Torres in long jump.
A huge highlight of these games was the double Gold medal victory in the 100 meters, won by Cray and Kayla Richardson, hence anointing Philippines as “The speed capital of Southeast Asia”.
“It was a shocking performance and we overtook traditional sprinting powers Vietnam and Thailand. Never in the history of the SEA Games have we taken the sprint crown in both men’s and women’s 100 meters,” Juico stated.
In these 2015 SEA Games in Singapore, the athletics team did not go without heartbreak, with several prior champions failing to again attain the gold medal. Most notable among these athletes was Jason Ramil Cid in Decathlon, Archand Bagsit in 400 meters, and Marestella Torres in Long Jump.
“Whilst some may be focused solely on Gold Medals, we are not. A podium finish is what matters. This is sports. Sometimes there is an injury. Sometimes a fraction of a second means the difference between Gold and Silver. We must be wise and celebrate the achievement and not nit-pick. In 3 races we had photo finishes and we got the silver in all 3. Give us another tenth of a second we would have 3 more gold medals”, says Juico.
Juico continues, “We should be applauding Marestella Torres. She is 34 years old. She had a baby who is now only 1 year old. She came all the way back, qualified and medaled in her event, and was only beaten by two world class jumps by the Vietnamese and Indonesian, both breaking their national records. It required national record jumps, a perfect day, to beat her. Marestella is a tribute to mothers everywhere who combine motherhood with excellence in other facets of life. She is a hero for getting onto that podium.”
The facts are the facts. A +62% medal improvement is a major step-change and makes athletics one of the bright spots of the Philippines performance. If all NSAs had achieved a similar result, the country would have won a total of 155 medals and finished a few notches higher. In the end, Philippines attained only 125 medals.
Veloci Time and L Timestudio witnessed the “blood and sweat” performances of all our athletes. Intense speed, breathtaking jumps and powerful throws were unleashed with the hope of attaining glory for our country. There were victorious moments and there were unsuccessful attempts. But the remarkable effort of each athlete as they fought for a triumphant finish is what really matters. They will continue to extend our support with the hope of uplifting our athletes.
I was also lucky enough to win my second Veloci Watch, which I may say is the perfect sponsor for athletics. I like their tagline, Live the seconds because it’s so appropriate when it comes to athletics. Those little seconds could have easily been another gold or another medal. Every seconds matter in this sports and in life. Stop holding back on life, go for the things that matter. Live each moment and make an impact. Veloci combines a lot of features in a single watch and remains affordable and fashionable. So don’t let the seconds go away, check out L Timestudio boutiques nationwide to choose the Veloci watch that’s perfect for you.
To the Philippine Athletics Team, you are all HEROES. WE SALUTE YOU!