Abahan, Mahulim conquer Altitude OCR world event
There is no doubt that Philippine pride Sandi Menchi Abahan will become the queen of the 2022 Altitude Obstacle Course Racing (OCR) World Championships in Mt. Everest, Nepal, after edging other world-class athletes.
Abahan and teammate Andrico Mahilum, a staff sergeant in the Army, were declared champions in the female and male categories of the world’s highest race held on Nov. 8 to 22.
“They brought glory to the flag, they overcame the obstacles, they conquered the mountain, they braved the weather,” said Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation president Al Agra.
The race was not an easy feat as Mount Everest is considered an extremely high-altitude race of the Altitude OCR World Championships series at 18,000 feet or 5,500 meters above sea level.
This is the second time Abahan of Mountain Province and Ifugao descent, but raised in Baguio City, raced at the Himalayas, as she and another national OCR team member Elias Tabac hold the world champion title and Guinness World Record in the 2021 world OCR championship in Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa.
This earned them berths to the World Championships in Mount Everest.
Participants in the international competition came from different parts of the world, notably Australia, Denmark, Brazil, Russia, New Zealand, Switzerland, United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates and the United States.
Abahan, also a 30th Southeast Asian Games gold medalist in the OCR, has been joining other national and international ultra-races this year, one of which is the 50K Borneo trail where she topped the women’s side in preparation for her world championships.
She clocked in eight hours, 40 mi-nutes, and 10 seconds edging 11 others in the female side of the only Asian stop of the Spartan World Tour Series.
What made it more impressive was that she placed sixth overall, as she tailed the 8:00:42 time of the male-fifth placer Simon Rotich.
She gained the opportunity of competing in the elite category of the Spartan Trail World Championship to compete for a prize money at each race and championship points on a global leaderboard for a grand prize payout. – Ofelia C. Empian