Tabal breaks Banayag’s 42k record, named Milo Marathon queen
Cebuana running queen Mary Joy Tabal got what she wanted and added a little bit more on the side.
Tabal once again topped the women’s local side of the National Milo Marathon 42k race yesterday at the Mall of Asia Arena grounds in Pasay City.
Further sweetening her victory, Tabal also shattered the 2002 record of Jho-an Banayag in the grueling 42-kilometer race that attracted 26,681 participants.
Tabal was named Milo Marathon queen after clocking 2:48.00. She beat Banayag’s record by 16 seconds (2:48.16).
Although she placed second to Kenyan Margaret Njuguna (2:42.18) in the overall open category, Tabal still won P250,000 for her victory in the local race. She also got P20,000 for breaking Banayag’s record.
She also won an all-expense paid trip to the 2014 Paris Marathon slated April 2014 together with men’s local back-to-back champion Eduardo Buenavista.
Tabal said her trainer and partner John Philip Dueñas was a huge factor in her winning performance.
“He was not just a pacer. He cheered me on and motivated me in the entire race,” Tabal said.
Tabal also said both she and Dueñas were very happy with the way her run went yesterday.
“We were targeting a sub-three hour run but I was surprised that I was way faster than our target time. I think my body’s perfect condition contributed a lot.”
Trailing Tabal were former Milo Marathon queens Mary Grace delos Santos (2:54:27) and Cristabel Martes (2:57:15). Delos Santos and Martes also placed third and fourth, respectively, in the overall race.
Although she ran a good race, Tabal admitted that she almost ran out of air in the last three kilometers of the race. In fact, she had to be attended by medics upon crossing the finish line.
“My training really helped me overcome this challenge and Philip’s presence by my side was a huge help,” Tabal said.