2015 SEA Games Marathon Preview

2015 SEA Games Marathon Preview

South East Asian Games 2015

Jun 5, 2015

Marathon Selection Methodology: Bertek and Master Endurance

Jun 4, 2015


The Philippines had four strong candidates for the Marathon selection. 2009 SEA Games Champion and Philippine Record Holder, Eduardo Buenavista who missed out on the 2013 SEA Games selections for not having ran the standard, in the Milo Marathon competition around the same time in Manila clocked 2:27:11 to beat the winning time of SEA Games Champion Mok Ring Yen 2:28.36. Buenavista in Hong Kong would go on to secure his place in the team when he dished out a time of 2:24:11 in Hong Kong. This would ensure the now 37-year-old Buenavista would have the chance to try and regain the SEA Games title he last won six years ago.

The second spot in the selection process was more difficult, Eric Panique was a bronze medalist at 2:30:30 at the 2013 SEA Games but was not able to improve his performance leading up to the SEA Games. Irinio Raquin who had ran 2:31:15 at the 2014 Milo Eliminations.

Panique looked secure for the second spot until things became more complicated when a distance runner who moved up to the Marathon won the 2014 Milo Finals in December. Rafael ‘Master Endurance’ Poliquit the 2013 PNG Champion in the 5000 and 10000m was previously coached by master coach Rosito Andaya but had since moved to 2001 SEA Games Champion and National Coach Roy Vence.


Master Endurance

At the Milo Marathon Poliquit won in the best time of 2:32:29, from Buenavista, Raquin, and Panique. The choice was now between Panique the Bronze medalist and ‘The Master’ Poliquit. The coaches at first voted for Panique but later coaches, meeting chose ‘The Master’ due to the fact he was showing better shape despite not hitting the 2:30.30 bronze medal standard.

The Philippines for its part has had a lot of Marathon Champions in Men’s De La Torre (1981), Suizo (1989,1991), Vence (01) Ballester  (03), and Buenavista (07).

Now Buenavista and Poliquit both have a shot at joining this legacy. While Buenavista is a big chance to regain his gold looking at the standings Poliquit is likely to pace Buenavista but he is ranked 9th out of the 12 athletes so it will be tough to land a medal here.



US Based University of Oregon Soh Roi Yong is a big local chance in the Men’s Marathon.

US Based University of Oregon Soh Roi Yong is a big local chance in the Men’s Marathon.

With SEA Champion Mok Ying Ren out due to injury, it’s his countryman Soh Rui Yong who still steps up the Oregon-based student who will be defending the honor in front of his home crowd. His best time is 2:26.01 the second fastest in the field after Bertek ‘Buenavista’.

A duo of very fast Vietnamese who were in a local race in Vietnam where 4 men dipped under 2h30 will represent Vietnam Nguyen and Bui both have best times of 2:26. Of course former SEA Games 5000 and 10000m champion Boonthung from Thailand and we can’t forget 2013 SEA Games runner up Thaung Aye of Myanmar will also be very strong in this race.

2015 SEA Games Womens Marathon Preview

June 4, 2015

As the 2015 SEA Games Womens Marathon is the first event the Philippines will compete in for Athletics. During the 2015 SEA Games on June 7, I think a post-game analysis must be presented for this event.


Tabby follows in the footsteps of the greats

Mary Joy Tabal

As we only had one qualifier for the SEA Games no methodology is required. The only athlete to qualify for the 2015 SEA Games was Mary Joy Tabal. Whose time of 2:48.00, this mark was set at the December 2013 Milo Marathon Finals in Manila. It was a Milo Marathon record and broke the Milo Record. The qualifying time for SEA Games is 2:49.01.

As the Filipino sole entry, Tabal came to a bit of controversy running a Marathon event in Los Angeles. Just a few months leading up to the SEA Games but was later reinstated in the team. Tabal has the best time this year is 2:51.55. The 25-year-old Cebuano is looking to follow in the footsteps of National Record Holder Cristabel Martes the 2001 and 2005 SEA Games Champion, and 2009 SEA Games Champion Jhoann Banayag.

Tabal who is coached by Triathlete Philip Duenas began off as a sprinter at South Western University in Cebu before moving up to longer distances.


Vongvorachoti is my Favorite!

Jane Vongvorachoti already heading to Rio 2016.

Now let’s have a look at the other contenders. Jane Vongvorachoti goes in as the favorite in this event. The 31-year-old represented Thailand for 10 years as a national football player. Jane spent the last few months acclimatizing in Thailand, she is based in New York. Jane’s time of 2:40.40 set the at Chicago Marathon last October. The only athlete in the field to have already hit the 2:43 standard of the Olympic Games. The last Thai to win the SEA Games gold in this event was Sunisa Sailoymen in 2007.

SEA Games Silver Medalist Myint Myint Aye of Myanmar is now 38! years old is also back for the SEA Games with an SB of 2:50.23. Aye began off as a 400m runner and she got older and gradually moved up to the longer events and eventually the Marathon.

2013 SEA Games Gold Medalist Pham Thi Binh is not entered in this event. Instead, she is replaced by the young duo of Thi Hanh Hoang and Thi Thuy Lam. While they only have times of 2:52.09 and 2:52.23 they are newcomers to this event at 21 and 17 years of age and could pull a surprise.

Natthaya Thanaronnawat of Thailand has put down a time of 2:50.02 according to the SEA Games website but the accuracy and venerability of this performance are questionable.

The Forecast is Jane of Thailand should win this easily, also a very strong 34-minute 10k runner with a 1:15 Half Marathon time. Myint and Tabal are expected to battle it out for the second and third.

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