By Rey Anthony Chiu |09:48 AM December 04, 2022
Cebuano endurance mountain bikers packed home three championship trophies, leaving Boholanos and Negrenses with each of the remaining two race categories as Bike Ta Bai sported another feather to its organizing cap with the successful BtB Bohol Epic Challenge 3 (3pic), November 27.
The third epic race (3pic) is still Bohol’s most grueling cross-country race that gets the bikers to the seemingly unride-able summits of Maribojoc mountains, and the technical trails of the lowlands, a fitness test for every mountain biker’s endurance, commitment to the finish, a working skill to perform minor bike repairs and the capacity to read the route from their mobile phones.
An organizer’s nightmare considering the need for race marshals strung in 108 kilometers of the race course, the organizers this time went on to add another biker’s must have skill: navigation through a map designated through a mobile phone application that bikers have to follow to traverse the full epic distance of cross-country roads, a hanging bridge, epic ascents that bring a full racer’s elevation gain to nearly 1,500 meters and tricky descents that could scrape off one’s knee, if one isn’t careful.
The two-man team self-sufficiency endurance race designates a captain and navigator, follows a mobile phone application designated route and discourages any outside help, each member is forced to help each other to finish the race together, instructs Engr Gerard Marmito, race organizer and cross country bike enthusiast.
Cebu’s Keith Defiebre Cycling team represented by Jessie Sanchez and Khalil Andrei Pepito, sporting race number 019 A/ B bagged the championship trophy in the Open Elite Category while Diamond Cycling Team’s Rizaldy Sanchez Jr., and Kirk Jed Gelloagan in race number 201 A/B went home with the 30-39 age category championship.
Moreover, Cebu’s Team Iyaan represented by Rhovic Khalid Cartagena and Ramxes Nino Pabuaya on racing number 201 A/B sprung out from the finish line ahead in the 20-29 age category.
Meanwhile, Bohol’s Team Ako, Ikaw, Way Asawa (AIWA) with bikers Emmanuelito Apor and Concordio Bernales pedaled to claim the 50 and above trophy and Bayawan Trail explorers (BTEx) of Negros Oriental Christopher Saavedra and Jowie Natak on racing number 404 A/B snatched the trophy in the 40-49 age category.
In the 108 kilometers, Cebu’s Jessie Sanchez and Khalil Andrei Pepito, racing for the Open Elite Category crossed back the finish line in 4 hours and 21 minutes after the race started at 5:00 in the morning, November 27.
On their heels and frantically boosting their speed with the downhill was the tandem of Jorice Mark Zabate and Aljun Villarin on 016A/B, barely 8 half-seconds behind their compatriot champions.
Ten minutes later, Rizaldy Sanchez Jr and Kirk Jed Gelloagan burst through the finish in 4 hours, 31 minutes, to win the 30-39 age championship.
Finishing fourth over-all and getting the 20-29 category championship were Rovic Khalid Cartagena and Ramxes Niño Pabuaya for Team Iyaan with an aggregate time of 4 hours and 31 minutes.
Fifth over-all and the silver medalists in the 30-29 age category were TriBohol/Gerardas of Bohol with local sprinter Nichol Lumay and Lord William Lim, posting an aggregate time of 4 hours 58 minutes. The duo was second in the 30-39 age bracket.
On the sixth place overall is Team Garagara’s Kim Michael Angelo Labiaga and Mark Gil Opo with a time of 5 hours, 6 minutes takin the 108 trails that separated the boys from the men. They came out 3rd in the 30-39 age group, finishing 3rd in the 30-39 age bracket.
Seventh overall finishing after 5 hours and 11 minutes is Sons of Zebedee of John Albura and James Kho who got 4th in the 30-39 age bracket.
Eighth in the over-all finishers were Murcia Bikers with Steven Despi Luague and Edwin Nacario Jr., finishing after 5 hours21 minutes and the 3rd in the Open Category/
Ninth is BTEX John Saavedra and Jowie Natak wearing 404 and the champion in the 40-49 age bracket, finishing in 5:44.15
Tenth is Cebu’s Team Gara Gara in racing number 419A/B represented by Rommel Macabuhay and Julius Regis, with an aggregate time of 5 hours and 54 minutes .
In the end, top fifth honors for the Open Elite were Champion Jessie Sanchez and Khalil Andrei Pepito (Cebu), Silver: Jorice Mark Zabate and Aljun Villarin (Cebu) and Bronze: Murcia Bikers Steven Despi Luague and Edwin Nicario Jr. (NegOr), fourth: John Paul Dagatan and Elijah Zamora (Cebu) and RMG Team of Geronimo Rodrigo and Rodale Justin Villegas (Bohol).
In the 50 and above, Champions were AIWAs Emmanuelito Apor and Concordio Bernales (Bohol); Silver Bohol Bike Kings Anthony Peralta and Noel Benedict Clarin (Bohol); Bronze Team Yummies Raymond Bayquen and Lloyd Ompad (NegOR), fourth SMB’s Cyril Dano and Eduardo Bungabong (Bohol) and fifth: AIWA Floro Tunday and Romulo Acaylar (Bohol).
In the 40-49 Age group: Champion Christopher Saavedra and Jowie Natak (NegOr), Silver Team Garagara’s Rommel Macabuhay and Julius Regis (Cebu), Bronze: Garagara’s Lawrence Lozada and Orville Tecson (Cebu), fourth TriBohol’s Pio Castro II and Nerio Zamora (Bohol) and fifth BTEx Dave Alexand Gelvoria and Lito Villegas (NegOr).
In the 30-39 Age group, Champion Diamond Cycling Team’s Rizaldy Sanches Jr. and Kirk Jed Gelloagan (Cebu), Silver TriBohol/Gerarda’s Nicho Lumay and Lord William Lim (Bohol), Bronze Garagara’s Kim Michael Angelo Labiaga and Mark Gil Opo (Cebu), fourth Sons of Zebedee John Albura and James Kho (Cebu) and fifth BTEX Leo Morgado and Rey Ian Gomez
In the 20-29 age group, champion Team Iyaan Rovik Khalid Cartagena and Ramxes Nino Pabuaya (Cebu), Silver: Start Something Adelino Ortillano and Ernesto Garcia Jr., (Bohol), Bronze BTEX Erm Canete and Jotham Yunos Tanasan, fourth SMB Alvin Ligores and Adson Calamba (Bohol). (RAHC/PIA-7/Bohol)