17 November 2009

“Better known than Manila in sports events” Subic now becoming sports mecca — TRAP

This tourism and maritime hub is fast becoming a sports mecca as more local and international sports organizers choose Subic for sports events than any other place in the country.

Tom Carrasco, president of the Triathlon Association of the Philippines (TRAP), said at the sidelines of the Asian Duathlon Championships here on Sunday that Subic could be the sports mecca of the Philippines, and maybe even Southeast Asia.

“For the last 16 years, TRAP has already held almost all of its events in Subic, including three Asian championships,” Carrasco noted.

“In the sports world, Subic is now better known than Manila,” he added.

Carrasco’s group brought to Subic the Asian Duathlon Championships, which attracted some of the best duathletes in the world. They also organized the Subic International Triathlon that was held here last May.

Carrasco also attributed the successful staging here of various sports events to the “reliable cooperation and all-out support” of the Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority (SBMA).

Meanwhile, SBMA administrator Armand Arreza said that the agency is, in fact, pushing Subic to become a world-class sports tourism facility.

Aside from banking on Subic’s natural assets—the clean water, rugged and challenging terrain, and unpolluted air, the SBMA is also investing in modern facilities to attract more sports events, as well as sports enthusiasts.

“Whether it be for biking, hiking, swimming, diving, and parasailing, you can always count on Subic as the ideal sports venue,” Arreza enthused.

The Subic free port also has a gymnasium, several tennis courts, baseball and softball fields, a racetrack, and an oval, Arreza pointed out.

The SBMA official also cited Subic’s “superb accessibility” either by land, water or air as another strong point that makes it an ideal venue for holding big sports competitions.

As an emerging sports mecca, the Subic Bay Freeport was booked last month for some of the biggest sports events in the country. These included the 2nd Chairman’s Cup Open Championships Taekwondo, the Bike Festival Asia, and the Subic International Marathon that was organized by Smart Telecom.

Meanwhile, several sports events have been lined up during the 21st Philippine Advertising Congress (PAC) that will be held on Nov. 18-21 at the Subic Bay Exhibition and Convention Center.

Rowena Reyes, co-coordinator of the 21st PAC Sports Committee, said the PAC sports events will raise funds for calamity victims through the Philippine National Red Cross chapter in Baguio City.

The events will be open to PAC delegates, as well as non-delegates, Reyes said.

The games will include “Takbo Mo! Tulong Mo!,” a 5-kilometer fun run on Nov. 19 at the Remy Field Oval; the billiards tournament “Sargo Mo! Tulong Mo!” on Nov. 20, which will also feature Filipino billard world champions Efren "Bata" Reyes and Francisco "Django" Bustamante"; the 3-point shootout basketball challenge “I-Shoot Mo! I-Donate Mo!” on Nov. 21; and the badminton fun game “Smash and Cash” at the Subic gym. (SBMA Corporate Communications)

PHOTO: Participants take their position the starting point of the Asian Duathlon Championships on Sunday, the latest sports event to be held at the Subic Bay Freeport Zone which is emerging as a mecca for various competitor sports and sports-tourism events.