DAVAO CITY—The eyes of the whole world will be on Davao as Sunrise Events celebrates 10 years of staging the IRONMAN races in the Philippines with the holding of the Alveo IRONMAN 70.3 Davao at the Azuela Cove today March 25, 2018.
Leading the elite cast of professional athletes competing in the race are Tim Reed (Australia), Craig Alexander (Australia), Mauricio Mendez (Mexico), Benny Allen (Australia), Bradley Weiss (South Africa), and Radka Vodickova (Czech Republic).
Sunrise Events lived up to its billing as a sports tourism company as it expanded its presence to all three Philippine island groups of Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao.
“We can’t truly say that IRONMAN is in the Philippines until we have an IRONMAN held in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. With the Alveo IRONMAN in Davao, IRONMAN is now truly in the Philippines,” said Sunrise Events President and founder Wilfred Steven Uytengsu.
“We at Sunrise Events are excited to be offering a brand-new race in another part of the country. We are encouraged by the enthusiasm Davao has expressed in hosting us there and I expect we will see this race steadily grow,” added Uytengsu.
Davao City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio expressed her gratitude that an IRONMAN race will finally be held in Mindanao.
“I’ve been waiting for IRONMAN since my first term as mayor back in 2012. Finally it’s here. I’d like to share this honor with all the Davaoenos. Thank you to everyone for coming to Davao. Despite Martial Law in Mindanao we hope you have a good experience. We want everyone to experience Davao City in the best way possible,” said Mayor Duterte-Carpio.
Davao City is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Philippines because of its natural beauty as well as its first class infrastructure. Participants, other athletes and visitors have a wide selection of world-class hotels to enjoy their stay in Davao which is on the east coast of Mindanao.
Sunrise Events General Manager Princess Galura said local celebrities like Uytengsu, Matteo Guidicelli, Kim Atienza and Bubbles Paraiso will also participate in the event.
Mayor Duterte-Carpio guaranteed the safety of the close to 1,800 participants. Mayor Duterte said the city has prepared for the event, from the venue, up to the security. She said the Philippine National Police has drawn up security plans for the country’s biggest triathlon event this year.
“We have been preparing for this three-day event since last year. We know that everybody, all the Davaoeños and our neighboring LGUs in Davao del Norte, are ready to welcome all our guests, athletes and our visitors. I hope they have a pleasant stay in Davao City and they enjoy Davao City as well as the other parts of the region,” she said.
Mayor Duterte said tourists and visitors will appreciate the richness of Davao City and other local government units’ culture in their stay during the event.
Renowned artist Kublai Millan and a community of T’boli brass casters present Mindanao’s culture before the world through the medal which will be given to all participants who complete the race.
Kublai said the medal symbolizes the island’s heritage as well as its constant struggle to find peace. He said that by swimming, biking and running, participants from all over the world will help others better understand what is happening in this part of the country.
Today’s lung-busting race will be the culmination of three days of exciting races including Friday’s IronGirls race and yesterday’s IronKids swim-bike-run.
The race officially starts at 6 a.m., with a 1.9-kilometer swim along the coastline of the Azuela Cove. It will be followed by the 90-kilometer bike race from Azuela Cove to Robinsons Tagum and back to Azuela Cove. The run will be through a 21-kilometer two loop course through Davao’s commercial district.
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