MANILA, Philippines — While social media is still abuzz with reactions on the outcome of the 2023 Miss Universe Philippines pageant, which saw actress and pageant veteran Michelle Dee taking home the top prize, fan favorite Pauline Amelinckx only has kind words and words of support for for the new queen’s quest for the global crown.
In their first post-coronation event, there was no sign of tension between Dee and Amelinckz, amid their respective fans’ speculations of a rigged competition.
“The stars aligned for Michelle, and she deserved it. She performed greatly. I’m happy also for the team that’s behind me that allowed me to perform so well,” said Amelinckx.
Meanwhile, Dee said she was glad that the pageant was over. “Honestly, we spent 3 months together. and pageantry is a roller-coaster ride of emotion. After the coronation night, it feels like a dream,” she said.
Speaking to reporters at the MUPh victory party following the coronation night on May 13, Amelinckx expressed her excitement for Dee, saying she would want to watch the latter as she competes for the 72nd Miss Universe pageant in El Salvador later this year.
“Michelle, I’m proud of you,” Amelinckx addressed Dee. “I’ve seen your blood, sweat, and tears, and we’ve all shared that journey. And I know how dedicated you worked for this, and I know that you will represent the Philippines in such an amazing way.”
“And maybe if there are sponsors for El Salvador, we could cheer you in real life,” she added.
Amelinckx herself received a national title as Miss Supranational Philippines at the victory party. This makes her the country’s representative to the 14th edition of the Miss Supranational pageant. “Apparently I’m going to Poland, in July, so the journey ain’t over yet,” she declared.
The Belgian-Filipino host and model from Bohol said she is looking forward to each other’s respective international assignments. “Of course, we’ll be here to support you (Dee). It’s gonna be another beautiful year where we get to share beautiful experiences and make a difference,” Amelinckx said.
Baguio’s Krishnah Gravidez, who won the Miss Charm Philippines title, and was crowned alongside Amelinckx, likewise dispelled talks of a spat among the new queens. “We are all happy with each other’s achievements because being on that stage is a huge achievement already.”
Gravidez will now try to exceed Annabelle McDonnell’s first runner-up finish at the inaugural edition of the Miss Charm pageant held earlier this year, and snag the global title for the Philippines in the international pageant’s second staging in Vietnam next year.
Amelinckx, meanwhile, will try to become the second Filipino woman to be crowned Miss Supranational 10 years after Mutya Datul scored the country’s first victory in the Europe-based tilt. She will be joined in Poland by Johannes Rissler, who will represent the Philippines in the seventh edition of the Mister Supranational contest.
The three titleholders shared the final moment in the recently-concluded national pageant, and were seen holding hands after Christine Opiaza and Angelique Manto were proclaimed first- and second runners-up, respectively, and the hosts were about to announce who will be crowned as the new Miss Universe Philippines.
It was an unexpected scene, because the pageant’s previous editions only had the last two women standing on stage before the announcement of the winner. But host Xian Lim explained during the show that the two other ladies whose names will not be called will receive their own titles in a separate occasion.
Gravidez said, “I was just closing my eyes, I was just praying that whoever is deserving, give it to her. So I am just happy for Michelle.”
Steve Harvey moment
Before this, another announcement surprised the audience. After the Top 10 delegates have been chosen, Lim said that all 18 semifinalists will return for the evening gown segment and will all still be competing for slots in the Final Five. The host said technical difficulties have prompted the organizers to resort to manual tabulations.
But the first confusing moment in the program took place earlier in the show, when host Alden Richards committed a “Steve Harvey” mistake and announced a wrong winner for a special award. Instead of declaring Shayne Glenmae Maquiran as “Miss Friendship,” he called Jannarie Zarzoso who was supposed to receive the “Face of Social Media” award.
The 2023 Miss Universe Philippines pageant is the fourth edition of the standalone national competition that chooses the country’s representative to the Miss Universe pageant. This is the first time that the organization has crowned the Philippines’ delegates to three different international contests. EDV