Rising ultra runner Rhys Yvan Dane Pawid has emerged the overall champion in the inaugural King of the Mountain Marathon (KOTM) Pulag 100 edition on April 22 to 23.
Pawid, who is a senior inspector in the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, clocked in at 18 hours, 35 minutes, and 57 seconds where he led the group of ultra-runners from the starting point at the Pulag Ranger Station at Sitio Babadak in Barangay Bashoy, Kabayan, Benguet towards the finish line at Camp John Hay in Baguio City.
In about two hours, Romando Cumahling tailed him with a time of 20:17:29 while Elmer Retolado came in close at third place with a time of 20:39:57.
Itogonia Mountain Marathon race director Don Antonio Santillan finished in fourth at 22:50:25 while Thang Hoang Huu came in fifth at 23:44:55.
Runners went through an approximately 120 kilometers race course, with a mix of dirt paths, single track trails and concrete roads.
The event also has many demanding ascents and breathtaking descents. The total elevation gain was around 6,430 meters while total elevation loss is approximately 7,410 meters.
Marjorie Velo led the female runners, finishing the race at 26:31:45 and placed 13th overall.
Maria Cecilia Kiswa placed second at 28:28:16 while Jessica Amos and Isabel Milagros Quipse crossed the finish line at 28:52:16 for third place.
There were 88 finishers from 113 participants, or a success rate of 78 percent.
The 2023 Pulag 100 is also a qualifying race for the 2024 Western States Endurance Race in the United States for all those who finish the race. – Ofelia C. Empian