Ronda Pilipinas 2013 kicks off in Zambo PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 09 January 2013 15:14

Zamboanga City will be the kick off point for Ronda Pilipinas 2013, the biggest nationwide cycling race covering over 2,200 kilometers through Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao on Saturday, January 12.

Mayor Celso Lobregat together with the organizers—LBC Express, Inc. presided over a meeting of all stakeholders in City Hall yesterday to finalize plans for the grand event that will put Zamboanga in the national cycling map.

Lobregat is extremely happy that the event starting in Zamboanga will be a big boost to the city’s tourism promotion efforts. He urged barangay chairmen and all concerned agencies to cooperate and support the holding of the activity which will start with the pre-race event on January 11.

Joaquin Yabut, race administration director said 12 teams composed of 96 cyclists, who underwent rigorous training, will slug it out in the gruelling 21-day, 16-stage challenge covering 2,200 kilometers of 32 cities and towns in Mindanao, Luzon and Visayas starting Jan. 12 in Zamboanga City ending in Baguio, February 1. 

Yabut said Ronda Pilipinas, now on its 3rd year, is supported by Total Philippines and the MVP Sports Foundation and has multi-objectives among which is to continue the pursuit of providing a strong base for the improvement of the sport and the Filipino cyclist to be back on the highest possible level in Asia as a platform for competing with the best of the world and firmly establish corporate and sporting partnership with the corporate sector led by the country’s courier of choice—LBC and other sponsors.

The event, he stressed is also intended to promote the different  areas of the Philippines, in this case Zamboanga—through sports tourism.

From tomorrow and Friday, the 400-strong entourage of Ronda Pilipinas will arrive in Zamboanga in time for the race day, January 12 at 9am with starting point at City Hall. From Zamboanga City, the race will proceed to Ipil, Zamboanga Sibugay, then to Pagadian City, Iligan City, Cagayan de Oro City and Cebu.

A pre-race event is slated on Friday, Jan. 11 with a social ride of the participating cyclists together with Zamboanga bikers, road racers including BMX and professional riders starting at 4pm at the Paseo del Mar to Pasonanca and then back to Paseo at 5pm where a short program highlighted by the presentation of the teams and other Ronda Pilipinas organizers and staff. — Sheila Covarrubias