New dad Benedicto top Filipino finisher in 2016 Ironman 70.3 | Inquirer Sports

New dad Benedicto top Filipino finisher in 2016 Ironman 70.3

/ 08:45 PM March 06, 2016

SUBIC – Given the conditions he has been in the past two months, never did August Benedicto imagine he would emerge as the top Filipino to finish the 2016 Century Tuna Ironman 70.3 triathlon race.

Even the 31-year-old even caught himself by surprise, edging better trained compatriots with his time of four hours, 20 minutes, and 15 seconds on Sunday.

“Di ko inexpect na ganun yung time ko kasi lagi akong puyat,” Benedicto said of what he noted was his personal best.


What kept the Paniqui, Tarlac native wide awake at night was his newborn baby Abednego, who was born last December.

“Kailangan ko tumulong sa pag-aalaga kaya hindi naging ganun kaayos yung training ko. 

Yung training ko, putol-putol. Di ganong ka-consistent tulad ng last year, pero pinipilit ko pa rin. Tumatakbo ako kahit 10 p.m. kasi di natin alam kung kailan iiyak yung bata,” he said.

Despite him juggling his duties as a father and an athlete, August always had onegoal in mind: win the Ironman just like he did in 2012.


“Ninerbyos din ako kasi gusto ko makuha ulit. Last year, second lang ako. Pangarap ko na sana naman ako na ulit ngayong taon,” he said.

Following the same way he did in his training, Benedicto made the most of his situation and chipped his way to the pole position among Filipinos, bucking a slow start which saw him lag behind by four minutes at one point.


“Inunti-unti ko lang hanggang sa makuha ko. Last six kilometers ng bike, nakahabol na ako,” he recounted. “Inabutan ko na si Paul (Jumamil) sa T2 (transition 2) kasi sabay na kami bumaba ng bike. Doon na sa sprint ako nagtuloy-tuloy, nakuha ko na. Nung nakita ko sa curve si Ben Raña na lumalapit, doon ko na binuhos na talaga all the way.”

But Benedicto admits that his long way back to the top hadn’t been a walk in the park, more so that the Filipino competitors are slowly emerging as prime contenders in triathlon.

“Lalo silang lumakas. Malaki din ang nerbyos ko kasi nga kulang ang training ko,” he said.

Though Benedicto didn’t have the same length of preparation as his peers, he had an inspiration like no other.

“Kahit wala sila dito, alam kong sinusupotahan nila ako. Mas lalo akong nagpupursigi dahil sa baby namin,” he said.

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TAGS: August Benedicto, Sports, Triathlon

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