INCHEON, Korea — Daniel Caluag is looking to live up to his billing as a gold-medal prospect in the Asian Games when the Olympian competes in the BMX competitions on Wednesday at the Ganghwa Asiad BMX Track.
Caluag has been tagged by Philippine Sports Commission chairman and Asiad chief of mission Ritchie Garcia as a gold medal potential by virtue of being the only Asian to compete in the event in the 2012 London Olympics.
However, a cloud of doubt has shrouded Caluag’s chances of late as he has not seen action in any UCI-sanctioned races after winning the gold in the Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar last year.
The 27-year-old said he made a decision to stop competing in UCI events for the meantime to finish his studies but made it clear that he continued to race in several circuits in the United States to keep himself in shape.
“I didn’t compete in UCI-sanctioned races but I joined races in the US where competition is still really high. There are a lot of champion riders who compete there,” Caluag assured during practice.
Caluag said he is also inspired to compete in the Asiad BMX competition since his wife Stephanie just gave birth to a baby girl last week.
“It was hard having to leave but I told myself that I’ll be riding for her and for the Philippines. I can’t wait to go back home, hold her, and tell her about what I did here in the Asian Games and bring her to the Philippines one day."
Caluag’s brother CJ will also compete in the eight-man event.