Patafa eyes 12 gold medals
Scooping 12 to 14 golds from medal-rich athletics in the coming Southeast Asian Games is an ambitious goal for the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association.
But don’t tell that to Patafa training director Renato Unso, who can readily provide data that the Filipino tracksters will hit the target based on their rigid two-month training camp.
Holed up in Lingayen, Pangasinan, Unso said the intensive training at Narciso Ramos Sports Complex proved beneficial as the national tracksters have been gradually improving in time for the Nov. 30 to Dec. 11 SEA Games.
“Our athletes are very much focused in practice as there are less distractions around the complex while the quarters are well equipped for their comfort,” said Unso, also the Patafa secretary general.
Filipino-American Zion Corrales Nelson is a strong gold potential in the women’s 100m and 200m dash as well as Mary Joy Tabal in women’s marathon, Natalie Uy in women’s pole vault, Carter Lily in the men’s 800m and William Morrison in the shotput.
Also with strong chances are pole vaulter EJ Obiena, decathlete Aries Toledo, triple jumper Mark Harry Diones, long jumper Junrey Ubas and Olympian Marestella Torres, who recently beat her SEA Games nemesis Maria Natalia Londa of Indonesia.
Three-time 400m hurdles champion Eric Cray will be back to defend his title and will anchor the 4x100m team.
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