One dead in Ironman 70.3 triathlon in Cebu

Photo by Dale Israel/CNNPhilippines

By Dale Israel/CNN Philippines – A Filipino athlete died at the Ironman 70.3 triathlon in Cebu early Sunday morning.

Lapu-Lapu City Police Office director Rommel Cabagnot said the fatality is 47-year-old Eric Nadal Mediovillo of Laguna Province.

In a text message to reporters, Cabagnot said Mediovillo was declared dead on arrival at the Mactan Doctors’ Hospital at 9:45 a.m.

The death was first confirmed by organizers and its event medical team.

“Our condolences go out to the athlete’s family and friends, whom we will continue to support,” event organizers said in a statement.

Fred Uytengsu, president of Sunrise Events Inc., which staged the triathlon, said they are discussing how they could assist the family of the athlete.

The athlete was rushed to the hospital after suffering from what appeared to be a heart attack during the swim course, which is a 1.9-kilometer race at the Shangri-la Resort in Mactan Island.

Aside from the swim course, Mediovillo was supposed to finish a 90-kilometer bicycle course and a 21-kilometer run to complete the grueling race.

Most of the foreign and local athletes complained of the extreme heat from the weather. Others also said there were strong currents in the Mactan Channel.

Meanwhile, for the third consecutive year, Australian Timothy James Reed bagged the Ironman 70.3 Philippines finishing at 3 hours and 54 minutes.

Following him is 21-year-old Mauricio Mendez from Mexico.

New Zealand’s Amelia Watkinson also bagged her first Ironman 70.3 in Cebu for the female Pro category at 4 hours 29 minutes.

Over 2,000 athletes from 45 countries participated in the race.

The Ironman website said Cebu has been the home of the Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 since 2012.

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