Regan and Santiago crowned champions in Aboitiz TRI2017


Pure grit helped Ben Regan of Team Fitness First and Ines Santiago of WU CREW overcome the challenges of both nature and the race course to emerge as the fastest finishers of their respective genders in the Aboitiz TRI2017 held last Saturday afternoon (September 2) around Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club at Hamilo Coast, Nasugbu, Batangas.

Among the men Regan reigned supreme to conquer the course of the popular Aboitiz TRI2017—a 1.5-km swim off Hamilo Coast, a challenging yet enjoyable 40-km bike in and around Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club, and a friendly 10-km run through the resort and registered the event’s fastest time of 2 hours, 14 minutes and 16 seconds and claimed the 30-34 title for himself. Following him was 25-29 champion Mervin Santiago of Sante Barley with 2:17:59 while the 3rd fastest male was One Triathlon Team’s Benji Zapanta (2nd in 30-34) with 2:21:07. Regan’s winning performance was the 2nd straight year he registered the fastest time of the annual Aboitiz triathlon

On the distaff side of the event presented by Aboitiz Equity Ventures, Inc.  (AEV) with the support of Aboitiz business units [BUs] AboitizPower, UnionBank, AboitizLand, WeatherPhilippines, along with sponsors Pico de Loro Beach and Country Club, Hamilo Coast, Neutrogena, TIMEX, ProHealth Sports and Spinal, Pico de Loro, Nuun, Standard Insurance, Hoka One One, Orbea, GU, and media partners The Philippine Star, RaceDay Triathlon and Endurance Sports, Ines Santiago was the fastest woman with 2:39:22 crowning herself the 35-39 champion. 30-34 champion Katelyn Kearney of Fitness First clocked 2:49:21 while 25-29 champion Kriska Sto. Domingo timed 2:53:07.

“I did not expect to win. In this race, Mervin Santiago and I had a small rivalry as he defeated me in two local races recently. For this race, I made sure I was ahead of him,” Ben Regan said. “Regarding the challenges I went through, the swim felt choppy while the short rain made biking on the roads very tough so I could had to be careful about speeding. On run, I felt tired and the hill climb was also tough. I just endured and watched the distance between me and Mervin Santiago while leading. Overall it was a fulfilling experience and I look forward to next year’s event. ”

In the relay competition, AboitizLand Team D was declared the All-Female Relay champion with a time of 2:48:17. UnionBank F took the All-Male Relay title in 2:35:53. The Mixed Relay team title went to AboitizPower 1 with a finish of 2:21:48. Other champions declared were Fitness First (Team Competition), Andrea Villanueva and Neil Aynera (18-24), Jethro Karl Ramos (35-39), Bic Ferreira and Roman Menz (40-44), Evangeline Endaya and Simon Mortimer (45-49), Maria Carmina Ilagan (Female 50-above), John Villanueva (50-54), Eduardo Francisco (55-59) and Alfredo Santos (60-above).

AEV Chief Human Resources Officer Txabi Aboitiz described Aboitiz TRI2017 as an inspiring display of sportsmanship, endurance, and discipline to triathlon and a motivation to commit to living an active lifestyle.

“By supporting Aboitiz Tri, all of you are helping us highlight the important principle of active, healthy, and sustainable living,” Aboitiz said.  “We will continue to be involved in more of these activities as we bring to life our inspired Group Purpose of ‘driving change for a better world’ by Advancing Business and Communities,” he added. Some 65 members of AEV community participated in the triathlon.

He reiterated the corporation’s support for sports through its annual Friendship Games, the Aboitiz Invitational Tournament, and the long-running Aboitiz Football Cup in Cebu.

Since it was inaugurated in 2014, the Aboitiz TRI franchise promotes the Aboitiz Group's sustainability mindset and focuses on wellness as an integral part of its team member engagement and development initiatives.