A record 42,214 runners answered the starting gun in the Metro Manila Qualifying Leg of the Milo National Marathon Sunday at the SM Mall of Asia grounds in Pasay City.
The number of participants exceeded the 40,000 target of the organizers and surpassed
the 38,000 participants last year.
Milo Sports Executive Andrew Neri said the big increase was due to the already higher awareness in running and the continued confidence that the annual event.
There were 747 runners in the marathon’s first edition in 1974 which started at the Quirino Grandstand.
Eric Panique of Himamaylan, Negros Occidental, ruled the premier 42.195-km race and veteran Luisa Raterta of Sta. Rosa, Laguna, finished first among the women.
Some 30,000 running enthusiasts mostly from ages six-year old to 40-year old comprised the bulk of participants with 30,000 while 4,000 saw action in the 21-k category and 3,584 in the 10-km.
The 30-year-old Panique timed 2:30:16.72 relegating Nike Park teammate Ireneo Raquin to second with 2:30:18.24. Jeson Agravante came in third with 2:41:52.80. Both Raquin
But Panique, a member of the Philippine national team, can not represent Metro Manila in the National Finals on Dec. 8 because he will compete in the 2013 Southeast Asian Games in Myanmar.
Raterta, a mother of three, finished with 3:14:16.89. Jennylene Nobleza, was second with 3:23:24.82 and Geraldine Sealza third with 3:32:37.05.
A former member of the RP Duathlon team, Raterta was a kilometer behind a Kenyan runner before taking the solo lead while approaching C5 road in Makati City.