Morales, Navy riders favored as Ronda fires off | Inquirer Sports

Morales, Navy riders favored as Ronda fires off

By: - Reporter / @junavINQ
/ 03:53 AM February 04, 2017

VIGAN, ILOCOS SUR—Jan Paul Morales would rather stay out of the spotlight and silently work his way to claim the general classification title of the LBC Ronda Pilipinas 2017.

But with the dominant performance of his Navy-Standard Insurance team that towed Morales to a pair of victories last year, the sprint ace from Calumpang, Marikina, should get used to the attention that a cycling champion normally commands.

“They will keep an eye on me, I’m pretty sure of that,” said Morales in Filipino, who won two of Ronda’s three legs in the 2016 edition.


The 31-year-old speedster should be the rider to watch as the 14-stage bikathon flags off Saturday with a 158-kilometer race that will journey to some of the scenic spots in Ilocos Norte and back to the provincial capitol in this historic city.


“If I can race intelligently, I have a big chance of winning it this year,” said Morales.

But he won’t be working alone in his determined bid to bag the P1-million GC purse from the field of 96 riders from 12 teams.

Navy skipper Lloyd Lucien Reynante, 2009 Tour champion Joel Calderon, veterans Rudy Roque and Ronald Lomotos will provide support as well as Jay Lampawog, Daniel Ven Carino and Archie Cardana.

Out to foil Morales are seasoned riders Cris Joven of Army-Kinetix Lab and Bike Extreme’s Jaybop Pagnanawon, son of 1996 Tour champion Rolando.

Joven has the tools to upset the Navymen with help from Alfie Catalan, Alvin Benosa, Mark Julius Bordeos, Ronnilon Quita, Marvin Tapic, Reynaldo Navarro and Lord Anthony Del Rosario.

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TAGS: Cycling, Jan Paul Morales, LBC Ronda Pilipinas 2017, Navy-Standard Insurance

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