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    Mark Galedo rules Hell of the Marianas cyling race in Saipan

    Dec 2, 2017

    MARK Galedo ruled the 11th Hell of the Marianas Century Cycling race in Saipan, making it a second straight year that a Filipino finished on top of the podium of the tough race.

    The former Le Tour de Filipinas champion shrugged off the changes on the course, making it 15 kilometers longer, finishing in three hours, 15 minutes and 51 seconds.

    Galedo made it to the top this time after placing third last year, when Jan Paul Morales won a 100km course that included a downhill from Isa Drive in Capital Hill to the flat road of Chalan Pale Arnold.

    “Nuong una mahirap kasi at tumatama sa mukha mo ang araw, against the light nung pababa na kami ng Bird Island kaya nahirapan ako dun. Mahirap din sa part na iyon dahil dumudulas ang gulong ko sa likod kaya alalay lang din muna,” said Galedo.

    “Tinignan ko ang ibang nasa lead group, sabi ko sa sarili ko walang kumikilos. Kaya umatake na ako at nung nagkaroon na ako ng unting gap sa kanila, tinuloy tuloy ko na,” added the 32-year-old rider, who was given the traditional winners toss to the Mariana Resort pool after his win.

    Galedo said it was the Filipino riders’ plan to stay close to each other and protect whoever is in the lead. Young Ronald Lomotos was shadowing him the entire race with Philippine Navy-Standard Insurances’ Morales and Daniel Viel Carino not far behind.

    “Nung medyo malayo pa dikit dikit pa din kami. Pero sinubukan ko pa kung may lakas pa ako at check ko din sila. Nung nakita ko sa final 15 kilometers na meron pa, tinodo ko na. Medyo lumayo ako sa last four kilometers,” Galedo said.
    The 19-year-old Lomotos finished just four seconds behind Galedo at 3:15:55.

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    “Headwind at iyong init ang kalaban mo dito. Talagang Hell nga ang race na ito. Iba ang dapat na atake mo sa mga paahon dito at dumudulas ang gulong mo. Kaya nag ingat din ako alalay din. Okay na ang mag habol kesa mag-crash ka at makatapos ng may mga sugat,” said the 19-year-old Ronda Pilipinas Best Young Rider.

    Morales clocked 3:21:32 and was pleased with third place, since a Filipino won for the second straight time.

    “Siyempre medyo frustrating, pero masaya pa din dahil Pinoy ang nanalo. Next year, for sure babalik ako para kunin uli ang title.”

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