Espina first to arrive Zark’s 500-kilometer footrace

Bacolod’s pride- Rolando Espina conquered the historical and longest ultra-marathon in the Philippines’ first Zark’s Ultimate Run 500. Espina bested 6 ultra-runners and crossed the finish line with exemplary and grueling official time of 102 hours and 15 minutes at Quezon City Memorial Circle on Saturday night.

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Rolando Espina during Spartathlon 2016

Earlier this year, the 44-year-old elite ultra-runner break the course record of Manila to Baguio’s 250 Kilometer Ultra Marathon Race in just 35 hours, 43 minutes and 11 seconds strong finish.

Espina led the pack of Zark’s 500 from starting line staged in Pusuquin, Ilocos Norte on February 22. The six runners started to race by 3 in the afternoon and vied immediate cut off times in every check points.

Half way, Espina clocked strong and maintain his pace to kilometer 400. Along his pursuers was Jivee Tolentino who paced him from the start but disconnected at kilometer 350 making him sure leader board all the way to finish line.

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Photo Credit, Edwin Colina (The six starters of Zark’s 500)

He received the elusive and hardest finisher’s buckle to earn in the country. The buckle is marked with 500 representing the distance and named Zark’s 500, with landmark of Ilocos Province and Quezon City. He also received freebies from various sponsors.

Espina is a veteran triathlete and works as a Nurse in Ireland for a long time and is also the first Filipino to finish Spartathlon in 2016.

Spartathon is a 246.8 Kilometer run held in Sparta, Greece and is said to be the toughest ultra-marathon in the world due to its extreme heat condition and strict cut off time from 75 check points.

Zark’s 500 Ultimate Run 500 is presented by Zark’s Burger and in partnership with BBG Run Events and Coach Roel Ano as Race Director.

 

 

BUKIDNON STUR60 ULTAMARATHON ON MAY 26

TEAM STUR (Sugarcane Trail/Ultra Runners) a running club of Bukidnon will launch their first racing event thru  BUKIDNON STUR60 ULTRAMARATHON CHALLENGE.

STUR60 is a 60 kilometer foot race from Kaamulan Ground, Malaybalay City and will finish the next day May 27, at the Municipal Hall of Maramag.

Azenith “Joy” Balbutin, Ultramarathon Queen of Bukidnon will be your Race Director. And together with Amigleo Brothers, Ramie and Rene. According to RD Azenith, she is expecting over 100 runners.  Finishers will be rewarded by locally made finisher’s medal, trophy, and tees. Post-race meal will be served too, expect sumptuous dishes! Good enough from your hard-earned  P 1,800 registration fee.

The exciting route route will pass National Road of Bukidon, plus an assault to Mt. Musuan Ecological Zone, with 646 meters above sea level elevation.

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For race details and other concerns, please contact Azenith Balbutin. Event’s Facebook page is also for you.

HOW TO GET MALAYBALAY

If you’re from Cebu, take an overnight ferry (TransAsia) to Cagayan de Oro then proceed to bus terminal for another ride, the bus will take you at least 2.5 hours to Malaybalay. You may also consider a flight to CDO thru Laguindingan Airport.

If you’re from Manila, Bacolod or Iloilo, fastened your seatbelt and prepare for your take off via Laguindingan Airport, proceed to Cagayan de Oro bus terminal, the bus will take you at least 2.5 hours to Malaybalay.

BUKIDNON TOP SPOTS

Lake Apo, Monastery of Transfiguration, Mt Capistrano, Dahilayan Adventure Park, Nasuli Spring, Alalum Falls, The Bukidnon Tree Park,  Kaamulan Park, Blue Water Cave, Mt Kitanglad, Mt Dulang Dulang, Mt Kalatungan, Mt Kalatungan, Wiji Peak, Panimahawa Ridge, and Mangima Canyon. And also, don’t forget to check on the cleanest wet market in the Philippines, Maramag Public Market.

Team STUR-Bukidnon dominates Rizal 100 Miles Ultra in Davao

At least 22 ultra runners across Visayas and Mindanao had participated Rizal 100 Miles Ultramarathon Race hosted by BBG Run Events which kicked off Thursday 12 AM December 29 at Rizal Park, Davao City.

(L-R) Neil Catiil, Ramie Amigleo, Jake Soriano and Coach Roel Ano

Ramie Amigleo of Team Sugarcane Trail Ultra Runners (STUR) was declared overall champion whom pursued a strongest time of  27:04:42 at the finish line set in Sunset Beach, Babak District, Island Garden City of Samal (IGACOS). While women’s division was won by Azenith Balbutin who is also from  Team STUR. Balbutin ended a final clock of 31:12:41 and ranked 6 out of 17 final pursuers. This is the first in BBG Run Events where champions from both divisions are coming from the same team. And also, a first time of Team STUR to have slid a double victory.

Amigleo and Balbutin merited by Coach Roel Ano during short awarding ceremony

Jake Soriano and Neil Catiil both from Team AXES Cagayan  de Oro ranked 2nd and 3rd with respective time of 27:33:20 and 27:50:34. Irene Tan of General Santos City and Shiela Maza of Butuan City placed second and third in women’s cut with final time of 31:38:46 and 32:09:26.

The race fianale ended in Samal on Rizal Day, 30th of December. The first 103 kilometer was around Davao City with specialized spicy route of  Toril, Mulig, Calinan, Baguio, Tugbok, Bangkal, Maa Diversion, Buhangin Diversion to Sasa Wharf. Racers had to recover at least 15 minutes by boarding the barge public transport to Babak, Samal to finish the last 57 kilometers of uphill and downhill route of Canibad then to finish line.

Side event. The 55K ultra race staged and finished at Sunset Beach was won by Jonathan Pido of Team PNP/DUC with official time of 5:37:50, followed by Masual Edward, 6:29:37 and Felcito Gitacay, 6:54:38 for 2nd and 3rd places. Women’s div was notched by Leah Asilom with her official time of 7:28:21 followed by Edna Razonable, 7:43:32 and Mariss Estores, 8:08:04 for 2nd and 3rd places respectively.

The said race was sponsored by Amihan and Soleus and with Coach Roel Ano as Race and Technical Director. Coach Roel was also the race director of DUC300 Butuan City to Davao City 300 Kilometer Ultramarathon last August 2017, and the incoming ultimate 500 Kilometer Ultramarathon Race from Ilocos Norte to Quezon City set on February 2018.

Infinite Ultra Queen of Cebu names female champ of East Coast 145 Mile footrace in Baler

Cebuana elite ultra-runner, Rhoda Caballero-Oporto bagged the top spot of women’s title in the fourth and final leg of PAU’s 3rd East Coast 145 (232 Kilometer) Mile Ultramarathon Race which kicked off 9 AM Tuesday, December 26 at Baler, Aurora.

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Oporto on the left, with her is Lyra Valles as her support 

Amidst the heavy rains on her last 25 kilometer on Wednesday night, Oporto managed to record a taxing time of 38 hours 23 minutes and 42 seconds which ranked her 2nd overall out of 10 runners. With her taxed time,  she marked a new record in women’s division which was previously gained by Jocelyn Lanas in 2016’s edition by 44:53:11.  Ahead of her is Bong Dizon, the overall champion with only gap time of  16 minutes.

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Dizon and Oporto, both are lead runners

Oporto is a member of Cebu-based Infinitea Runners and Paksit Running. She is also one of the trio, Psycho Inday Runners.  Recently, she was declared 2nd runner to cross the 3rd Cebu 100-Mile Northwest Ultramarathon finish line on November 19, where she was her best as female champion with official time of 25 hours and 37 minutes.

Oporto is PAU veteran runner. This year she herself staged podium in country’s some of the longest foot race. In the 2nd North Coast 200 (320 KM) Mile Ultramarathon Race last May 14, she ranked 4th runner out of 1o finishers and respectively declared female champion with daunting time of 62:48:16

On the races such as, 3rd West to West 280K Ultramarathon Race last April 15, she was named 1st Runner Up in her category and 6th over-all with record of 53:53:20. And also named 2nd Runner up and 7th overall with the time of with 46:44:24   in 3rd Manila to Baguio 250 Kilometer Ultramarathon Race last February 18.

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Oporto on the left with her support, Valles before gun start staged in Baler

According to Lyra Valles, Oporto’s support and team mate from Cebu. She was in her good condition to almost pace the leading runner, Dizon. The said event was hosted by Race Director, Jovie “BR” Narcise.

 

The Top 10 of 2017 Longest Ultramarathon Race in the Philippines

It  was a Golden Year for the Philippines. Ultra running craziness overload from four corners of the country. There were new course records, new faces, new events and longer distances. In the last 365 days, the following were the top ten longest foot races in the country;

1.  3rd Manila to Daet (Bicol) 342 KM Endurance Challenge

  • Date of Event: October 28- November 1, 2017
  • Place of Event: Rizal Park, City of Manila to Daet, Camarines Norte
  • Course Record: (2017) Kevin Luna 74:18:38

2.  2nd North Coast 200-Mile (320KM) Ultramarathon Race

  • Date of Event: May 11-14, 2017
  • Place of Event: Laoag City to Sts. Ana, Cagayan Valley
  • Course Record: (2017) Bong Dizon 61:22:33/ (2017) 62:48:16

3.  1st Butuan to Davao (DUC300 Kilometer Ultramarathon)

  • Date of Event: August 3-6, 2017
  • Place of Event: Butuan City to Davao City
  • Course Record: (2017) Jonathan Pido 56:56:35/ (2017) Hedda Riola 62:47:23

4. 3rd West to East 280K Ultramarathon Race 

  • Date of Event: April 13-15, 2017
  • Place of Event: Bolinao, Pangasinan to Dingalan, Aurora
  • Course Record: (2016)Thomas Combisen/ (2017) Remy Caasi 52:53:39

5.  3rd Manila to Baguio 250 Kilometer Ultramarathon Race 

  • Date of Event: February 16-18, 2017
  • Place of Event: Luneta Park City of Manila to Rizal Park, Baguio City
  • Course Record: (2016) Thomas Combisen/ (2017) Remy Caasi 46:12:10

6.  3rd South Luzon 240 KM Endurance Challenge

  • Date of Event: April 29, 2017 to May 1, 2017
  • Place of Event: Tagkawayan, Quezon
  • Course Record: (2015) Eric Cruz 47:08

7. 3rd East Coast 145 Mile (233 KM) Ultramarathon Race 

  • Date of Event: December 26-28, 2017
  • Plaece of Event: Casiguran-Baler, Aurora
  • Course Record: (2016) Thomas Combisen 35:03:30/ 2016 Jocelyn Lanas 44:53:11
  • *course record for update by December 28, 2017

8.  2nd Cebu Southwest 210 Kilometer Ultramarathon Race

  • Date of Event: June 9-11, 2017
  • Place of Event: Santander, Cebu to Plaza Independencia, Cebu City
  • Course Record: (2017) Bayani Alvarez 26:29/ (2016) Rhoda Oporto 42:37

9.  5th West Coast 200K Ultramarathon Race

  • Date of Event: August 19-21, 2017
  • Place of Event: Olongapo City to Alaminos, Pangasinan
  • Course Record: (2017) Rolando Espina 26:45:18/ (2017) Remedios Barcelo 35:13:45

10 .2nd Quezon Boundary to Boundary 185K Ultramarathon

  • Date of Event: December 2-3, 2017
  • Place of Event: Tagkawayan, Quezon to Tiaong, Quezon
  • Course Record:(2016) Eric Cruz  29:08:16

Honorable Mention. Crazy 24 & 32 Hour Run 2017 who was notched by Jose Tindog with total distance of 187.6 kilometer  held last December 9-10, 2017 Intramuros, Manila. Roselle Abajo, the first woman to finish the longest foot race in the country from Manila to Daet 342 KM ultra event.

Congratulations to all tough runners who have shown and proven human limits. To all race directors and organizers, you are amazing. Thank you for innovating such jaw dropping ultra distance events. See you in 2018!

Engbino rules NegrosOr 100 Miles Ultra

Desiderio “Sano” Engbino of Spectrum Runners once again claimed his supremacy in the local ultra-running events as he named overall champion in the Negros Oriental Ultramarathon 100 miles category concluded in Dumaguete City this weekend.

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Photo Credit: Spectrum Runners

The 45 year old Engino clocked 20 hours and 28 minutes in an out and back route from Dumagute City to Sta. Catalina with the total grueling distance of 165 kilometer. Engbino was a veteran ultra-runner of Negros Ultramarathon as he also won way back in 2014 and 2015 in 100 Km category.

Engbino is a Cebu-based runner who also hailed champion in various ultra-racing event. This year, he completed the Leyte Island Ultramarathon Series 2017. He was the champion of both Ormoc to Baybay 60 Km Ultra, Maasin City Agas-agas Bridge 80Km ultra and lastly Leyte Landing 100 Km Ultra.

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Photo Credit: Spectrum Runners

He also defied age, as he ended champion of Cebu100 Miles Endurance Challenge 2017, and seems to be favorite to call as one of  “The Big Three of Men’s Spectrum” ultra runners. Engbino is set to compete BDM102 next year in January.

Together with his celebration, his team mates Edilberto Batiancila and Warlen Cadimas both won male and female category NegrosOr 100 kilometer category.

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Event’s title card

Negros Oriental Ultamarathon was organized by Sir Paul Paras, who also a race director of Siquijor 360 and some of the sporting event based in Dumaguete City.

 

 

PCG Officer Vico Librilla, in PHL longest footraces

PCG officer Ludovico “Vico” Librilla Jr, an officer enforces law on waters, safeguards and protects seas and properties but no less a ruler and conqueror of Philippine road’s longest ultramarathon events.

BBG Manila based ultra-runner and proud Ilonggo is a member of Team CARE Runners. To date, he holds at least hard earned gold, silver, bronze buckles. The latest is his 3rd Cebu Northwest 100 Miles Ultra.

Librilla in GOA with RD Jovenal “BR” Narcise

Waving seas to road. 39  year old Librilla has been active in ultramarathon despite of his hectic shedule. Being in the Philippine Coast Guard, requires physical and mental fit and to mention, he is the first and only PCG officer to have finished an ultramarathon distances ranging 160 to 342 kilometers.

3rd Cebu Northwest 100 Miles Ultra
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Buckle collection as of October 2017

In the platform. He was named over-all champion of  this year’s Manila to Baguio 250 Kilometer Ultramarathon. With 24 pursuers in Rizal Park  Baguio City, he officially clocked 43 hours 3 minutes and 49 seconds. In August 2016, he was also champion of PAU’s 3rd West Coast 200 Kilometer Ultramarathon, of 23 finishers he clocked 35 hours and 34 minutes and 21 seconds at the finish line in Alaminos, Panganisan. More than that, he landed podium places in various ultra running events.

1st Butuan-Davao (DU300) Ultra Race
2nd Cebu Southwest 210km Ultra Race
3rd Manila -Daet 342km Ultra Race

There’s no reason to skip. This year, Vico had attended country’s longest ultramarathon races. All strong finished. June, when he vyed Visayas’ longest foot race through 2nd Cebu Southwest 210 kilometer Ultramarathon. August, when he finished Mindanao longest foot race from Butuan City to Davao City through DUC300, a jaw dropping distance of 300 kilometers. And on November, when he successfully conquered Luzon’s and country’s toughest and longest ultra through 3rd Manila to Daet 342 kilometer ultramarathon.

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To inspire others. Being in the flatform it’s a goal of him to inspire others especially his comrades in PCG. Whatever inclusions are, all are hard earned through tough training. He inspires all by saying slowly but surely which made him successful strong finisher in all races.

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Meet him in person,  he is a good friend. For sure you will enjoy his company. He has a sense of humor enough to bring you off out of place. With his 28 ultramarathon records, plus marathon and fun run attendances genuinely deserved a man to follow and get inspiration from his ultra running journeys.