CAGAYAN DE ORO – Newcomer Keenan Lou Caburnay topped the 40th MILO Marathon Cagayan de Oro regional qualifiers Sunday (October 23) at the Centrio Mall. Sharing the spotlight was two-time MILO Queen Mary Grace de los Santos who easily grabbed top honors in the distaff side by more than 20 minutes over her closest pursuers.
Caburnay levelled up his game after winning the 10-kilometer side event in last season’s Butuan City qualifiers. He finished the 21-kilometer course in 1:11:25 to beat out Prince Joey Lee (1:12:27) and Bryan Quiamco (1:14:32).
Meanwhile, de los Santos can now officially shoot for her third MILO crown after ruling the prestigious footrace in 2011 and 2012. Her time of 1:30:15 was too fast for runner-ups Gilda Velarde (1:51:04) and Reychelle Nave (1:51:16).
A total of 76 men and 4 women earned tickets to the National Finals this December 4 in Iloilo City. They will try to unseat reigning MILO King Rafael Poliquit and Queen Mary Joy Tabal and a host of foreign challengers for the top prize of PHP 300,00.00 and a chance to represent the Philippines in an international marathon in 2017.
The penultimate leg of the series will be held next Sunday (October 30) in Butuan City. Runners will have one final chance to qualify when Davao hosts on November 6.
Overseas-based runners who wish to participate in the Nationals must prepare a certification from any AIMS member race held after December 4, 2015 that they have met the minimum times for either the 21-kilometer or 42.195-kilometer distance in their age group. For more information, log on to www.milo.com.ph.
Other Winners: Christian Jude Sandinao and Jeanny Rose Lanzado (10 kilometers), Allan Oman and Jennalyn Taypin (five kilometers) and Stanley Tolentino and Ynah Ybanez (three kilometers).