Sunday, May 19, 2019

Highest Point By Team Pinikpikan 50-Kilometer Road Run Post-Race Report

I learned a lot of lessons in this race. Probably the biggest realization is that preparing and training hard for an ultra doesn’t guarantee a strong finish on race day. Anything can happen and throw you off your game. I actually took the time to train for this race. In previous races, I only train and go for runs when I felt like running. There’s no cohesion at all. If I wake up and I feel like training, I’d go for a run. But if I wake up feeling lazy, then there’s no running for that day. But for HP, I ran and trained for a month. Woke up every single day and hauled myself to go for a short or long run depending on the week’s mileage target.

Then race day came. My only goal was to keep a conservative pace, maintain it without burning myself out, and cross the finish line in under 7 hours. If I can cross the finish line in under 7 hours, I’d be more than satisfied. I’d be happy. Ever since I started running, I never treated it as a competition. I run because I enjoy the process. I like the camaraderie among runners. And it’s my way of keeping my body fit and conditioned for upcoming hikes and climbs.

I felt great for the first 15 to 20 kilometers. My feet felt light. My breathing was good. I wasn’t getting tired that much. This race is going to be a breeze. Or so I thought. Then somewhere along one of the downhill sections in Caliking (or before Caliking, I’m not so sure of the geography here), I felt something twitch in my left knee. It didn’t hurt much so I was still able to run with it for a few kilometers. But the pain just got worse. I slowed down to a snail-paced jog. And then poof, out of nowhere, cramps started on the same left leg. This was my first time to experience leg cramps during a run.

And that was it. No more running or even jogging for me. Afraid that I might seriously injure the left leg if I keep running, I decided to walk and power-hike through the rest of the course. So for the last 20 to 25 kilometers, the ultramarathon turned into a walkathon. I became sort of a cheerleader for other runners passing me by. Finally crossed the finish line after 8 ½ hours. The 77th runner to do so out of 101 runners.

Finally, after eight and a half hours, we crossed the finish line. Photo credit: Sprite/Team Pinikpikan.
In a nutshell, it was a great race and a great experience with great people. A big thank you to Team Pinikpikan and everyone involved in the realization of this race. Congratulations to all my fellow runners. See you all again next year. Cheers.

A day after the race, I went to see a physician to have my left leg checked. Ayos naman, no injury or anything. Nabigla lang daw which I found weird and strange considering how I've been using the same leg to run for a month prior to the race. Anyway, the leg is fine. That's all that matters.

Friday, May 17, 2019

Geje Eustaquio of Team Lakay Wins Bout in Singapore

Geje Eustaquio of Team Lakay is back in the winning column with a well-deserved unanimous decision victory over South Korea's Kyu Sung Kim in Singapore in the undercard of One Championship: Enter the Dragon.

Eustaquio took the South Korean to school in the first two rounds of the three-round fight. Although he is much younger and with a significant height and reach advantage, Kim never found his rhythm until the third and final round. Eustaquio swept the first two rounds with his leg kicks and counter-punching. He effectively used his movement to tag the South Korean only to slip away just at the right moment to avoid the counters.

The third round was much more competitive with Kim increasing his output and aggression. He knew he lost the first two rounds so he knew he had to finish Eustaquio to get the win. Both fighters traded punches in the pocket. It was still a close round and could've gone on any direction. But with the take-down at the last seconds of the bout, Eustaquio secured the round.


With the win, Eustaquio is yet again inching towards the One Championship flyweight belt which he lost in January of this year to Adriano Moraes of Brazil. Who knows, the former champion might get the title shot with Moraes not yet penciled to fight anytime soon. Should Eustaquio and Moraes fight again, it will be the fourth time they lock horns inside the cage.

One Championship: Enter the Dragon is headlined by a championship battle between Shinya Aoki and Christian Lee.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

9 Dead and More Than a Dozen Injured in Road Accident in Tabuk, Kalinga

Nine people died while more than a dozen others were injured (some in critical condition) when a dump truck figured in an accident in Tabuk City, Kalinga on Saturday morning. The incident occurred in the vicinity of sitio Binongsay in barangay Malin-awa in said city. The group was on their way to a traditional event called "posipos" in the nearby barangay of Balawag when the accident transpired.

Based on initial reports, the open truck carrying around 40 passengers malfunctioned on a steep section of the road. The truck started backing down. The driver lost control and the truck eventually fell off the road.

Responders immediately rushed the injured passengers to the Kalinga Provincial Hospital and Almora General Hospital. Some were referred to higher medical facilities. One injured passenger reportedly passed away while in transit to Tuguegarao City.

Mark John Lazaro, the driver of the truck, has surrendered to the Kalinga police and is currently under police custody.

Source: ONE Kalinga

Reported names of casualties:
1. Ghelyn Kim Gallema
2. Rufina Dawagon
3. Jules Alvester
4. Edmund Mangagom
5. Crisanta Casirayan
6. Lucita Mangagom
7. Doming Matalang
8. Gaspar Edoc
9. Ngi-iw Gaano

Baguio City and Benguet to Experience 12-Hour Brownout on Tuesday (April 23)

Most of Baguio City and Benguet will experience a 12-hour brownout on Tuesday (April 23) according to a "notice of power interruption" released by the Benguet Electric Cooperative Inc. or BENECO. The cooperative announced the scheduled blackout on Wednesday (April 17).

The power interruption will affect the whole of Baguio City and Benguet with just a few exempted areas. The interruption will run from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm. However, BENECO clarified that the brownout was scheduled by the NGCP (National Grid Corporation of the Philippines) and not by BENECO itself.

The NGCP cited the following as the reasons for the scheduled power interruption:

1. Preventive maintenance and testing of the La Trinidad SS 300MVA Power Transformer No.1 and associated Feeders.

2. Corrective and preventive maintenance along La Trinidad-Sagada 69kV Line and La Trinidad-Sablan 69kV Line.

3. Correction of defects at La Trinidad Substation

4. Shifting of power source of Mankayan-Sagada 69kV Line Segment from La Trinidad-Mankayan(LI)/ Sagada 69kV Transmission Line to La Trinidad-Mankayan(L2)/ Lepanto 69kV Transmission Line in preparation for the implementation of re-routing works at Tower Nos. A & B along the La Trinidad-Mankayan 69kV Line. La Trinidad- Mankayan(L1)/Sagada 69KV Transmission Line will be de-energized from Tower No.74 to 139 only.


Areas affected by the scheduled power interruption are as follows:
1. Whole of Baguio City except Pacdal, Mines View Park, Gibraltar, Pucsusan, Lualhati Village, Outlook Drive, Lucnab, Country CLub Village, South Drive, parts of Cabinet Hill-Teachers Camp (near and along South Drive), Happy Hallow, DPS Compound, Greenwater Village, Military Cut-Off, Sta. Scholastica, Scout Barrio, Upper Dagsian, Lower Dagsian, Hillside, Gabriela Silang, Camp 7, Camp 8, Poliwes, San Vicente, Balsigan, Kias, Loakan Liwanag, Loakan Proper, Loakan Pidawan, Bubon, EPZA, Pinesville, PMA Fort Del Pilar, Atok Trail, Loakan Magsaysay, Loakan Apugan, Springhills, Kadaclan Village, VOA, DENR area.
2. Whole of La Trinidad except Beckel and parts of Ambiong near Lamut
3. Whole of Tuba except Camp 4, Camp 3, Camp 1, Twin Peaks, Tabaan Sur, Ansagan, along Kennon Road
4. Whole of Bakun except Kayapa
5. Whole of Bokod except parts of Ambuklao and Bobok Bisal
6. Whole of Kibungan except Tacadang
7. Whole of Atok, Buguias, Kabayan, Kapangan, Mankayan, Sablan, and Tublay

Friday, April 12, 2019

Edward Kelly Of Team Lakay Victorious Over Sung Jong Lee In One Championship: Roots Of Honor

Edward Kelly is back in the winning column with an impressive victory over South Korea's Sung Jong Lee in the under-card of One Championship: Roots of Honor. In a competitive fight that extended to the second round, Kelly outworked Lee in front of thousands of fight fans at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City. With Kelly raining punches and Lee not intelligently defending himself, referee Kemp Cheng had no choice but stop the bout, awarding Kelly a well-deserved TKO victory.

But the path to victory wasn't an easy one for the Team Lakay fighter. He was taken down by Lee in the first few seconds of the fight. He had to escape several submission attempts from the South Korean.

The first round was also marred by an illegal strike by Kelly when he kicked Lee in the head while they were both grappling on the the mat. He was given a yellow card by the referee which potentially means he might lose 10% of his purse to his opponent.


In the second round, the two picked up where they left off in the first. Lee preferred to grapple while Kelly kept his striking output. With Lee burning himself out and emptying his tank, Kelly increased his output and pressure. With Kelly working on his ground and pound and Lee covering up, referee Kemp Cheng stopped the bout.

With the TKO win, Kelly improves his record to 12-7 while Lee drops to 2-5.

Eric Kelly Loses To Kwon Won Il Of South Korea Via First-Round KO

Eric Kelly, one of the pioneers of mixed martial arts in the Cordilleras, if not in the Philippines, had another bad night when he had his lights shut out at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City in the under-card of One Championship: Roots of Honor. He succumbed to the punching power of Kwon Won Il, a lanky South Korean who took the fight on short notice. Kelly was supposed to lock horns with Kai Tang of China but the latter pulled out of the card. Reason for the shift hasn't been disclosed by the promotion.

The bout started normally with each fighter trying to read each other's movements. The beginning of the end came when a straight right hand from Kwon landed flush on Kelly's jaw and put him on the mat. A few hammer fists later, the referee stepped in to end the bout.

Kwon Won Il was vacationing in Manila when he was called to be Kelly's opponent. He last fought for One Championship in February in Singapore. He was submitted by Masakazu Imanari, the legendary Japanese fighter.


This is Kelly's sixth loss in a row. All losses came by either knockout or submission prompting fans to suggest that maybe it's time for him to hang up the gloves. Whatever route he chooses, he will always remain as one of those who paved the way for Cordilleran and Philippine MMA. With a professional career that started in 2009, Kelly currently holds a record of 12 wins and 7 losses. He had wins over Mitch Chilson, Jens Pulver, and Rob Lisita.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Kapangan Grand March 25-Kilometer Road Run Set For May 5

Gear up, runners. Another running event is coming your way on Cinco de Mayo. The town of Kapangan is cooking up a 25-kilometer road run that stretches from La Trinidad through Tublay and finally into Kapangan. The race is part of the events scheduled for the town's upcoming fiesta.

The run is named after the Grand March, a type of dance that's very popular in the town during occasions like weddings, reunions, anniversaries, graduations, and holiday celebrations. The story has it that the dance traces its roots during the turn of World War II. American soldiers stationed in barangay Sagubo performed a "grand march" when they learned of the Allied victory in the war. Locals replicated the moves of the dance and over time, it spread throughout the town.

In 2017, the town council enacted an ordinance declaring the Grand March as the town's official dance. The goal of the ordinance was to institutionalize the dance to ensure its preservation and continuity with upcoming generations of i-Kapangans. The provincial board of Benguet also gave the ordinance their support and approval.

Road runners will be treated with views like this along the route. Photo by Daniel Ted C. Feliciano/The Cordilleran Sun

The Kapangan Grand March Road Run came to fruition through Mark Fermin of Igohiking in partnership with various hiking groups and the local government units of Kapangan, Tublay, and Kapangan. For more information about the run, visit the run's Facebook event page here.