CEBU CITY – A new champion was crowned in the person of Rafael Pescos as he emerged as the best of the best in the 40th MILO Marathon Cebu qualifiers last September 25. Meanwhile, Ruffa Sorongon kept her title in the Women’s Division as they towed 83 other runners who successfully earned slots in the National Finals set for December 6 in Iloilo.
Pescos, a regular participant in MILO races, finally clinched his first championship in the main 21-kilometer category in a time of 1:14:00. Coming in at Second Place was Michael Largo (1:17:20) while Noel Tillor saw his two-year reign as local champion come to an end as he could only take Third Place (1:17:20).
Defending champion Sorongon, who also won the Tagbilaran qualifier in 2014, clocked 1:26:24. She beat out 2013 Cagayan de Oro champion Cresabel Cadion (1:32:10) and Sandra Soliano (1:46:26).
Reigning MILO Marathon Queen and Rio Olympian Mary Joy Tabal graced the event. Tabal did not compete but sent off the three-kilometer fun run for kids aged 12 years and below while providing inspiration to the estimated 17,000-strong field.
The MILO swing of the Visayas ends next week (October 2) with Dumaguete hosting. After that, the group will comb through Mindanao to search for more running champions with legs in General Santos (Ocober 16), Cagayan de Oro (October 23), Butuan (October 30) and Davao (November 6).
Other Winners: Abraham Cheruiyot Kilimo and Karla Cosep (10 kilometers), John Cliff Debolusan and Mary Joy Loberanis (five kilometers), Kent Lloyd Gabino and Moira Frances Erediano (three kilometers).