Just hoping to survive tough race, Benedicto gets top 5 finish in full Ironman PH
Giving up was not an option for Filipino triathlete Augusto Benedicto on Sunday.
Survival was his only goal in his bid to conquer the first full-distance Ironman race in the Philippines.
Benedicto, however, ended up getting more than what he expected after finishing in the top five in the top pro male against some of the world’s best triathletes.
“[I was] just praying to God that I’ll be able to finish and survive the race. I just kept thinking, ‘Give me strength, Lord,’that’s what’s going through my mind,” said Benedicto, who crossed the finish line in nine hours, 48 minutes and 46 seconds.
“I just wanted to finish the race and not give up until I get it,” he added.
Benedicto was the fastest Filipino finisher but four others in Benjamin Rana, John Philip Duenas, Jonard Saim and Arland Macasieb made it to the top 10 filling the seventh to 10th spots.
Benedicto even placed higher than Austria’s Freddy Lampert, who was the race’s early leader but failed to sustain his form to finish in sixth.
Each finisher received a special medal made by renowned metal sculptor Daniel dela Cruz and weavers from Marawi.
“I’m very happy that they were able to make medals from Marawi. We all know that the people there are really struggling because of the war and I’m praying that they will be able to get back up,” he said.
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