THE Congress of Philippine Aquatics Inc. (COPA) sealed a partnership with swimming apparel brand Speedo as the COPA levels up on its advocacy for grassroots development and swimming inclusivity.
Philippine swimming icon Eric Buhain, now Batangas First District congressman, and Speedo Philippines vice president for operation Manish Mahtani officially sealed the partnership recently along with COPA treasurer Chito Rivera
“This partnership is a major boost to Philippine swimming,” said Buhain, an Olympian and Philippine Sports Hall-of-Famer after the signing ceremony at the Speedo outlet at the BGC High Street in Taguig City.
“COPA as I see it has the most credible grassroots sports program,” Mahtani said. “Speedo has been around for 34 years and we’re focusing also on grassroots development which is very similar with COPA’s advocacy.”
Rivera said that COPA, which was established in 2020, completed three-fourths of its regionalization program with Regions 2, 9, 4B, BARMM and CARAGA undergoing the process.
COPA will also promote water polo, diving, open water and artistic swimming as well as BIFin swimming, a medal-rich discipline with 24 events..
The organization also helped conduct the tryouts for the aquatics team to the Cambodia 32nd Southeast Asian Games in May with Troy Castor, Kristoff Gonzales, Raymund Paloma and Renz Santos vying in the men’s division and Alexi Cabayaran, Janine Dela Paz, Raina Samantha Leyran and Ishaella Mae Villa seeing action in the women’s side.
They will be coached by Ramil Ilustre (men) and Caezar Alcantara (women).