A pack of celebrities signed up for the Century Tuna Ironman 70.3, raring to showcase their sporting skills and talent in the premier swim-bike-run event firing off Sunday (March 12) in Subic Bay.
Dingdong Dantes, Drew Arellano, Gerald Anderson, Kim Atienza, Gretchen Fulido and Jake Cuenca, among others, take a break from their busy schedule to compete in relay division side by side with the premier 1.9km swim, 90km bike and 21km run event featuring some of the world’s top and upcoming triathletes.
Dantes, Arellano, Anderson, Atienza and Fulido are regular triathlon campaigners while Cuenca has been drawn into the sport after playing the role of a triathlete in a recent TV show.
The organizing Sunrise Events, Inc. and sponsoring Century Tuna are expecting the third staging of the event to hit close to 1,000 entries after the inaugural run drew 902 and the next attracted 823 participants.
“With triathlon gaining tremendous popularity the last few years, we do expect to lure a record crowd for Century Tuna Ironman’s 70.3 third staging,” said Princess Galura, general manager of SEI.
The CT Ironman 70.3 will actually cap a three-day weekend of fun and competition with a 2GO Bike Service and Expo slated on March 10 and the Alaska Ironkids and the highly popular Century Tuna Superbods: The Underpants Run spicing up the action on March 11.
Great Britain, the US and Australia, noted for their top triathletes, are fielding in 23, 22 and 20 entries, respectively, Singapore has 16, Guam 14, Japan 12, Germany 11 while Switzerland has 10.
Other countries participating in the event presented by Century Bangus, Department of Tourism and Tourism Promotions Board, are Argentina, American Samoa, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, China, Czech Republic, Spain, France, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, Indonesia, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Lebanon, Sri Lanka, Monaco, Mexico, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Thailand, Uruguay and Vietnam
Last year’s champions Craig Alexander of Australia and Swiss Caroline Steffen are coming back to defend their respective titles with both bracing for a tougher challenge with a slew of rivals raring to foil their bids in the event backed by 2Go Express (official courier and logistics partner), Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (venue partner), Acea Subic Bay (host hotel), Manila North Tollways Corp. (bike course partner), Gatorade (official sports drink), Saucony (official footwear and apparel partner) and TYR (official swim cap partner).
Aside from the centerpiece pro and Asian Elite, other titles to be disputed are the 18-24, 25-29, 30-34, 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64, 65-69 and the 70-and-above age categories.(pr)