Casares, Mangrobang rule Dapitan 5150 Triathlon

SEA Games gold medalists also bag P175,000 champions' purse

By: Glendale G. Rosal - Multimedia Correspondent - CDN Digital | September 10,2023 - 10:37 AM

Kim Mangrobang (left) and Fernando Casares (right) pose for a photo at the finish line of the Dapitan 5150 Triathlon. | Glendale Rosal

Kim Mangrobang (left) and Fernando Casares (right) pose for a photo at the finish line of the Dapitan 5150 Triathlon. | Glendale Rosal

DAPITAN CITY, Philippines — As expected, top bets Fernando Casares and Kim Mangrobang ruled the inaugural Dapitan 5150 Triathlon on Sunday, September 10, 2023. 

These Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) gold medalists topped the men and women’s overall in the Olympic-distance triathlon race held for the first time in the “Shrine City” of Zamboanga del Norte.

READ: SEAG gold medalists Kim Mangrobang, Fernando Casares to see action in Dapitan 5150

Come-from-behind win for Casares

It was a come-from-behind victory for Casares after suffering numerous setbacks during the race. 

Casares, in an interview, recounted that he mistakenly positioned his bike’s gear which gave him mechanical problems during the 40k bike race. 

He endured the mechanical problem until he got caught up with eventual third overall placer Satar Salem of the TRI SND Barracudas and gained the lead in the last stretch of the 10k run.

“I find the race really hard, I had a problem with my bike’s gear. I left in the wrong position. It was a huge mistake, but I was able to overcome that situation and I was very proud about it. During the run, I almost got cramps, so that made the race harder,” Casares said. 

READ: Ironman 70.3 returns to Cebu in April 2024

Perfect tune-up race for Asian Games

“Luckily, I caught up with Satar (Salem) in the 3.5-kilometers of the run, it was a really good run, I felt confident, I felt strong and I could totally feel that time that I can win the race.”

Casares revealed that the Dapitan 5150 Triathlon race was a perfect tune-up for him before flying to China along with Mangrobang and fellow Philippine team members for the Hangzhou Asian Games later this month. 

“I had to do a simulation two weeks for the race, this was the perfect tuneup race. I think I’m ready, but I have to improve my swim because I’ll go up against Japanese and Korean guys who are very good in the swim. This is the perfect tune-up race,” said the Filipino-Spanish Casares. 

5150 Bohol overall champion John Leerams Chicano placed second overall in the male category in 1:59.34. Salem who was initially leading in the bike and run portion closely trailed Chicano for the third place in 1:59.36. 

Iñaki Lorbes (2:02.59) and Raymund Torio (2:05.33) settled for fourth and fifth places, respectively.

READ: SEA Games 2023: Kim Mangrobang loses triathlon title to naturalized Cambodian

Easy race for Mangrobang

In contrast to Casares’ difficult race, Mangrobang, the four-time SEA Games gold medalist in triathlon made easy work to emerge female overall finisher. 

Mangrobang crossed the finish line in 2:11.41, while Lady Samantha Corpuz captured the second place in 2:18.31, and Bohol 5150 champion Erika Burgos landed at third in 2:21.46. 

“Nagenjoy po ako sobra, ngayon lang ulit ako nakapagnon-drafting race, na oovertake ako ng mga boys, medyo naasar ako pero enjoy naman yung race. Syempre ang ganda at linis ng daan, lahat ng nakatira dito sa Dapitan sumusunod, walang tumatawid,” said Mangrobang.

(I really enjoyed it, this is just the time again that I had a non-drafting race, the boys overtook me, I was a bit put off but I just enjoyed the race. Of course, the road is really nice, all those living in Dapitan, really followed the rule, no one crossed the road.)

“Syempre, hindi mawawala yung pressure. Medyo kinakabahan ako sa race, pero malaki ang tiwala ko sa sarili ko, sa training ko, at ano yung sinabi ng coach ko. This is part of our Asian Games training. Magandang training din ito para sa amin,” she said.

(Of course, the pressure is not gone. I was a little nervous with the race, but I believed in myself, in my traning and what the coach told me. This is part of our Asian Games traning. 

READ: SEA Games 2023: Kim Mangrobang retains title in women’s duathlon

Bagong Bayani title

Casares and Mangrobang secured the title “Bagong Bayani” which is formerly known as the Filipino Elite for being the overall champions in the race. 

On top of that, they each secure P175,000 purse.

Around 400 triathletes from 11 countries competed in this international triathlon race organized by Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI) and hosted by the City government of Dapitan. 

ALSO READ: Karen Manayon: Cebu’s promising triathlete

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TAGS: DAPITAN 5150 Triathlon, Fernando Casares, Kim Mangrobang

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