A BUNCH of Filipino-American athletes are equally determined to grab the limelight as medal-rich athletics competition of the 2014 Philippine National Games starts today at the Ultra in Pasig City.
Eric Cray of El Paso, Texas and 2013 Southeast Asian Games 400-meter hurdles gold medalist hopes to break the national record held by Ralph Waldy Soguilon. He will also see action in the 100m dash and will join Henry Dagmil, Noli Torres and Archand Bagsit in the relay event.
Princess Joy Griffey of Washington will also participate in the women’s 100 and 200m dash which she had best times of 11.58 (2009) and 23.93.
The daughter of former national junior sprinter Leah Nolido and was born in Bacolod, but grew up and lives in Washington could be the second fastest Filipina sprint ever in both the 100 and 200m after national record holder Lydia De Vega.
Other Fil-Ams include Donovant Grant Ariola, who will be up against Dagmil in the Men’s Long Jump. Ariola who is 22 is also from El Paso, Texas the same home town as Cray.
Tyler Ruiz of Los Angeles, a fourth-place finisher in the last SEA Games will be the main contender for high jump. Tyler has a best leap of 2.17m in 2013. The Filipino Americans will also flex muscle against two ace sprinters from Singapore in Jamal Amirudin, who is the SEA Games bronze medalist in 100m (10.42) and SEA Games 400m Champion Bagsit, whose best time is 21.67.
A total of 15 Singaporeans participating at the Philippine National Games this year.