February 29, 2024

■  Ofelia C. Empian 

Baguio athlete Sandi Menchi  Abahan keeps getting stronger, as she emerged as a champion in the Spartan Asia Pacific Championships at the Spartan-Asia Pacific (APAC) Championships 2023 and Trifecta Weekend in Thailand.

Abahan ruled the grueling APAC Championships and placed first runner-up in the Spartan Beast 21-kilometer category with 30 obstacles during the event held on Nov. 25 to 26 in Phuket.

SPARTAN ELITE ATHLETE — Cordilleran obstacle sports Philippine team and two-time Southeast Asian Games gold medalist, Sandi Menchi Abahan showed her prowess as the champion in the Spartan APAC women’s championship during the Spartan-Asia Pacific Championships 2023 and Trifecta Weekend in Phuket, Thailand on Nov. 25 to 26. — Spartan photos

Fellow Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation (POSF) athletes who performed in the event were Mel Campos and Tess Nocyao in fourth and sixth place in the APAC women championships while Mel Campos finished second runner up in the Spartan Beast category. 

“We are immensely proud of your achievements. Thank you for representing the flag with such dedication and excellence,” the POSF said.

The Spartan Trifecta race is an opportunity for every athlete to join the elite group of Trifecta finishers, where they should be able to complete a sprint, super and beast categories in one year to conquer Spartan’s ultimate challenge.

Early this year, Abahan, who started out as an endurance athlete in marathons, said she wanted to strengthen her obstacle course racing prowess when she started shifting in OCR.

Her first foray in the OCR was in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, where she won her first medal as a first-time Southeast Asian Games competing athlete.

The Cordilleran athlete explained that endurance running focuses more on the stamina in the race while ninja event is more on the techniques, power, and speed.  

The two-time SEAG gold medalist also ruled the Spartan women’s elite during the final leg of the Philippine elite series at the Montclair Trifecta Weekend in Montclair, Pampanga on Nov. 18 to 19. – Ofelia C. Empian