The first Clark Sunset Marathon set on December 9 at the Parade Grounds of Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga is expecting 5,000 entries.
But the one-day event might be without the country’s elite runners like this year’s Southeast Asian Games women’s gold medalist Mary Joy Tabal because of a major race – the National Milo Marathon – slated on December 3 in Cebu City.
“Everyone is invited to compete including the elite runners, but we’re not expecting most of them because of the Milo Marathon in Cebu that will happen a week before our race,” said Andrew Neri of RUNRIO Events Inc. during a news conference on Thursday.
“I think some of the elite runners will choose where to compete but that’s okay with us. So, those who did not qualify for Milo can just participate in Clark, while other runners who feel that they have a strong chance of winning in the Clark Sunset Marathon could decide to run there.”
The one-day race supported by the Clark Development Corporation and Tourism Board of the Philippines, features 5-kilometer, 10km, 21km and 42km categories.
The 42km men’s and women’s open category will give P100,000 cash prize to the champion plus trophy, P80,000 to the first runner-up plus trophy, and P50,000 to second runner-up plus trophy.
For the local 42km men’s and women’s, the champion will take home P30,000 plus trophy while the first runner-up will get P20,000 plus trophy and the second runner-up P10,000 cash plus trophy.
Filipino runners can join the 42km open and local categories while foreign participants can only race in the 42km open class. But if a foreign runner is living for more than 10 years in the country, he can join the local category.
Neri said the Clark Sunset Marathon aims to help Clark, Pampanga establish itself as a venue for world class running events with the same caliber as that of the Boston Marathon, Singapore Marathon and New York Marathon.
For details visit www.runrio.com. The deadline of registration is December 3.
JOSEF T. RAMOS