Henri Schoeman of South Africa and Ells Visser of The Netherlands are overall champions in Ironman 70.3.

Up to 1,400 professional athletes gathered in Cebu for the 21-kilometer race that involved swimming, cycling, and running.

Under the piercing heat of the sun, athletes raced from Lapu-Lapu City to neighboring Cordova town and crossed to mainland Cebu via the Cebu-Cordova Link Expressway, and back.

Schoeman finished the race in four hours and two minutes while Visser finished in four hours and 21 minutes.

Schoeman said he tried to “keep my cool” in the scorching heat.

“It was hot but I tried to keep my cool. I just tried to keep my rhythm. I’m really happy I won today… even on the course, cycling on the CCLEX bridge, it’s amazing the amount of support that everyone to be out here,” he said.

Visser, for her part, said she worked hard to compete in Ironman 70.3.

“I’ve been working so hard with a lot of obstacles. I had some setbacks but really, guys, if you’ve been working hard, keep believing in yourself, one day, you will succeed. Keep on working on your goals,” she said.

Among the local athletes who competed was Matteo Guidicelli who participated in swimming and cycling.

Guidicelli, who is from Cebu, emphasized the importance of support from the crowd in cheering to motivate the athletes.

“Nindot kaayo ang swim sa Cebu, one of the best swims in the world… very important, the hydration stations and, of course, the cheers sa mga Cebuanos… pinaka-importante para ma-motivate ang mga atleta,” he said.

The race on Sunday, April 21, 2024, was the 10th time hosted by Lapu-Lapu City.