RAFAEL Pescos dominated the Metro Manila elimination race of the National Milo Marathon, winning by over four minutes on Sunday at the Mall of Asia grounds.
The 23-year-old Cebuano topped the 42-kilometer category of the event for the first time, clocking 2:38:27.
Erick Panique finished in 2:43:10 for second place followed by Noel Tillor in 2:47:31.
It was a huge win for Pescos, who is eyeing redemption after struggling with the flu during the national finals in Iloilo last year.
“For six months, I really trained and put in the hard work to prepare for the Manila qualifications. Even if I am not familiar with the race route in Manila, I was determined to fight and finish strong,” said Pescos.
Cinderella Lorenzo won the women’s race in 3:16:15, way ahead of Lany Cardona (3:23:38) and Lizane Abella (3:29:48).
Pescos and Lorenzo each bagged P50,000 and booked their slots to the National Finals in Cebu City on December 3.
Pescos said he will share part of his prize money with his running team.
“Training wasn’t easy, but through sacrifice, perseverance and discipline, I was able to accomplish this great achievement today, together with my kids who also ran in their first 3K race,” she said.
“I encourage them to join me today for a learning experience through running. They are my inspiration, as well as my husband who is also my coach, and the rest of my family, too.”
The National Milo Marathon will continue in Angeles (August 6), Tarlac (August 13), Naga (August 27), Lucena (September 03), Lipa (September 10), Tagbilaran (September 24), Roxas (October 1), Iloilo (October 8), General Santos (October 15), Davao (October 22), Butuan (November 12), and Cagayan De Oro (November 19).
Meanwhile, the Milo Marathon’s Help Give Shoes advocacy will be donating 5,000 pairs to underprivileged school children this year.