Record shattered on 1st day of Palarong Pambansa
DAVAO CITY, Philippines – Nearly 3 hours after the first gold medal was seized, a Palarong Pambansa record was also shattered.
It all happened right after the first whistle of the medal-rich athletics of the 2019 Palarong Pambansa on Monday morning, April 29.
Lheslie De Lima, a 14-year-old Grade 9 student of Baao National High School in Bohol, retained her crown in the secondary girls 3,000 meter event to claim the first gold medal of the national competition.
De Lima made the University of Mindanao track oval her own turf after crossing the finish line at 10 minutes and 22.42 seconds in the finals.
The Baao native raced past Region 10's Camilla Tubiano, who registered 10:32:32 for silver, and Region 3's Lovely Cordivilla, who clocked in 10:38:82 for bronze.
"Inspirasyon ko po ang mga magulang ko," De Lima, a daughter of a farmer and a housewife, said.
(My parents are my inspiration.)
De Lima first won the 3,000 meter event in 2018 when the national conclave for secondary and elementary school-based athletes was hosted in Vigan, Ilocos Norte.
She also won a gold medal in 1,500 meter event then and is expected to defend it on Tuesday, April 30.
A new long-jump record
Meanwhile, Algin Gomez of Cagayan Valley broke the Palarong Pambansa long jump record nearly 3 hours after De Lima's feat.
The 18-year-old fresh graduate of Aparri East National High School in Cagayan Valley leapt a record-shattering 7.55 meters in his last Palarong Pambansa stint after 4 straight years of qualifying.
"Sobrang happy ko po kasi na break ko 'yung record, kasi last ko na din po kaya kailangan ko na ibigay ang lahat," Gomez shared.
(I'm really happy that I broke the record. It was my final year so I knew I needed to give it my all.)
Apart from besting the Palaro record of 7.26 meters set by Julian Reem Fuentes – also from Cagayan Valley – in 2012, Gomez also retained his title in the event where he first won in Vigan last year.
His record then was 6.91 meters.
Gomez, son of a tricycle driver and a house wife, survived a tough contest from Bicol's John Mike Lera, who registered a convincing 7:39 meters but still settled for silver.
Patrick Botabara of Calabarzon, meanwhile, tallied 6.96 meters to clinch bronze.
"Binigay ko lang po ang lahat kasi inspirasyon ko maging isang national team [member] para matulungan ko ang pamilya ko at maiahon sa hirap," he said.
(I did my best because I'm inspired to become a part of the national team to help my family rise out of poverty.)
A total of 17 medals are at stake from athletics on Monday. – Rappler.com
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