Olympian Joy Tabal and 60,000-Strong Participants to be Energized in the Pilot Leg of the 2024 National MILO® Marathon

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    Olympian Joy Tabal and 60,000-Strong Participants to be Energized in the Pilot Leg of the 2024 National MILO® Marathon

    In celebration of its 60th anniversary in the Philippines, The country’s longest-running footrace will hold the opening race of the season in three different cities namely Laoag, Batangas, and Mandaue on April 7. Over 60,000 kids, families, and athletes, including spectators and virtual runners are expected to conquer the thoroughfares of Luzon and Visayas in the anticipated running event.

     

    Former MILO® Marathon Queen and Olympian Mary Joy Tabal, who is at the helm of the pilot leg in Mandaue, expressed delight in bringing the National MILO® Marathon back to her home region after three years of its absence.

    “We are very excited to be opening the doors to our Visayan runners,” said Tabal. “The National MILO® Marathon has always been a breeding ground for local talents like me to see the global stage. It's where I flourished and became who I am today. As the organizer of the Mandaue race, I aim to pay it forward, ensuring a memorable and enjoyable event where everyone can excel and pursue their goals in sports or in life."

    Tabal stands as a historic figure in the National MILO® Marathon, being the only elite athlete to clinch the MILO® Marathon Queen title six times. This achievement paved the way for Tabal to participate in prestigious global running events, including the Paris, Boston, and Ottawa Marathons. The latter secured her qualification for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio, Brazil, marking her as the first Filipina marathoner to compete at that time.

    The Mandaue City government has pledged its support by deploying security, medical, and traffic personnel along the entire 21 KM race route. With an estimated 15,000 runners expected to participate, Mayor Jonas Cortes said: “The City of Mandaue is excited to host the inaugural race of the National MILO® Marathon. We look forward to extending our warm hospitality to all runners joining the event.”

    To ignite the champion spirit within the youth of Mandaue, elementary and secondary students will also take part in the prestigious footrace. In collaboration with the Department of Education (DepEd) and local government units, learners will participate in the races, fostering a spirit of competition and promoting healthy lifestyles among the youth.

    "We acknowledge the importance of sports as a means to impart invaluable life lessons while encouraging an active and healthy way of life, and the National MILO Marathon serves as an excellent platform for that. Active kids are better learners!" expressed Dr. Danilo G. Gudelosao, Assistant Schools Division Superintendent of DepEd Mandaue Division.

    “This start of the season marks a significant milestone for us at MILO® as we celebrate our 60th year in the Philippines,” said Carlo Sampan, Head of MILO® Sports. “We are very excited to welcome Filipinos to the National MILO® Marathon and witness their show of grit, determination, and discipline that will surely be the foundation to accelerate their journeys to success.”