After conquering Mt. Everest, Wenceslao banners PHI in fitness challenge

ABS-CBN Sports on May 17, 2016 04:24 PM
Wenceslao banners PHI in fitness challenge
(From left) Noelle Wenceslao, Derrick Carlo Mercado and Merwin Torres will represent the Philippines in the 'Test of Will' finals two weeks from now at the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore.

National dragon boat team member Noelle Wenceslao banners three other crossfit enthusiasts representing the country in the 'Test of Will' finals on May 28 at the extravagant Gardens by the Bay in Singapore.

The 37-year-old Wenceslao, one of the first three Filipinas who reached the summit of Mt. Everest in 2008, will be joined in the team by Derrick Carlo Mercado, Zoe Pond-McPherson, and Merwin Torres as they lead Team Philippines in competing against representatives from Malaysia, Thailand, and the host country in the inaugural Southeast Asia-wide fitness challenge presented by Under Armour.

The four emerged as the top two bets in their respective divisions during the local phase of the meet held at the Bonifacio High St. in Taguig from April 16 to 17.

A member of the national dragon boat team, Wenceslao emerged the best out of 301 participants after doing 243 total reps. She was followed by Pond-McPherson, the so-called ‘Fittest Woman in Philippine Crossfit’, who accomplished 213 reps.

Mercado, an architecture graduate, triumphed in the male category with 164 reps., while Torres, a medical technologist, came in at second with 151 reps.

Wenceslao, Mercado, and Torres appeared in the weekly Philippine Sportswriters Association (PSA) Forum at Shakey’s Malate on Tuesday, where they were presented by Tin Majadillas, managing director of One of a Kind Marketing, Under Armour Sports, Southeast Asia, and Under Armour Southeast Asia brand athlete Asi Taulava.

Majadillas said this early, Wenceslao and Mercado are fancied to top the meet being the leading athletes with the most number of reps completed based on the official tally of the four Test of Will national heats.

Still, the competition may be tougher than expected.

“The exercises that they will do are different from the ones they did here in Manila,” said Majadillas. “It will be a surprise for them.”

All 16 bets will go head-to-head inside the highly-touted structure known as ‘The Tower,’ which contains different fitness zones with calisthenics exercises.

Wenceslao, who does technical alpine mountaineering, open water diving, and trekking, admitted it’s the first time she will competing outside of the country not being part of the dragon boat team.

But she remains confident the four-man PH team will do good against 12 other competitors from three different countries.

“No matter what the odds are, wala namang imposible,” she said.

During the forum, Majadillas and Taulava, the veteran center of NLEX, formalized the signing of contract making the former PBA Most Valuable Player the new ambassador of Under Armour in the region.

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