Mary Joy Tabal (L) and Eduardo Buenavista show off their trophies after their wins. Jeff Venancio
Eduardo Buenavista and Mary Joy Tabal claimed the right to represent the Philippines in the Paris Marathon on April 6, 2014 as they triumphed over their rivals in the 37th Milo Marathon national finals on Sunday morning.
Buenavista, a two-time Olympian, reigned in the 42-kilometer main race with a commanding time of 2:27:14 to seize victory for a second straight year and a fifth win in the marathon's finals.
He was over five minutes ahead of Rene Desuyo who crossed the finish line in 2:32:34. Irineo Raquin placed third with 2:32:57.
Buenavista did better than his time last year of 2:29:45, but he fell short of his goal of surpassing James Tallam (2:18:41), who competed in the open category and had the second-best time there.
Mary Joy Tabal sped to victory with a record-breaking 2:48:00 for local women's 42K races. She had a lead of over six minutes against Mary Grace de los Santos, who came in at 2:54:27.
Buenavista qualified for the 37th Milo Marathon finals via the earlier Baguio leg.
Tabal advanced from Cebu, where she has reigned for three consecutive years with John Philip Dueñas as her coach. She placed second in last year's 42K race. — Earl Victor Rosero, GMA News