RECOGNIZING the importance of the country’s campaign in the Paris 2024 Olympics, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said he will help seek additional funding for Olympics-bound athletes in their preparation.
Go, chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Sports, made the pledge during the third Siklab Youth Sports Awards on Monday night at the Market! Market! Activity Center inside Ayala Malls in Taguig City where he was feted with the “Sports Godfather” award.
The senator authored and co-sponsored Republic Act 11470, which established the National Academy of Sports and has been an ardent supporter of Philippine sports.
This has led him to be recognized in the gala awards organized by the Philippine Sports Commission and the Philippine Olympic Committee (PSC-POC) Media Group.
A total of 60 young athletes from 33 sports shared the limelight in the returning awards ceremony for the finest Filipino junior and youth athletes.
Go For Gold Young Heroes Awardees Gennah Malapit of athletics (javelin throw), fencers Andrea Sayson, Alexa Larrazabal, Rex Dela Cruz, gymnast Ancilla “Charlie” Manzano, all of them medalists in the Southeast Asian Games, were recognized.
World Games champion Alyssa Kylie Mallari of muay, kickboxer Fitzchel Martine Fermato, jiu-jitsu’s Santino Luzuriaga, golfer Rianne Malixi and gymnast Karl Eldrew Yulo joined them on stage in the event also supported by MVP Sports Foundation, Smart/PLDT, CEL Logistics, JC, NLEX, Pacquiao 3-in-1 Coffee and Giligan’s with Market! Market! and Ayala Malls as venue partners.
The third edition of the award-giving ceremony for the nation’s top junior and youth athletes across all sports likewise presented a special citation to the Youth Football League and the Davao Aguilas Football Club of grassroots sports benefactors Mike Atayde and Quezon City First District Rep. Juan Carlos “Arjo” Atayde.
Young para athletes Ariel Alegarbes and Angel Mae Otom of para swimming were likewise recognized in the gala attended by Commissioners Olivia “Bong” Coo and Edward Hayco, Philippine Olympic Committee secretary general Atty. Wharton Chan and Philippine Paralympic Committee president Michael Barredo and secretary-general Goody Custodio.
Bowler Artegal Barrientos and his team of four teammates—Zach Ramin, Stephen Luke Diwa and Marc Dylan Custodio—were present for winning two gold medals in the Asian Youth Tenpin Bowling Championships.
Burlington Super Kids awardees Sebastien Neil Mañalac, ice hockey’s Kimberly Athena Sze, Joseph Anthony Godbout of modern pentathlon, muay’s Jan Brix Ramiscal, Hussein Loraña of athletics, Trisha Mae Del Rosario (obstacle sports) and volleyball’s Khylem Progella were likewise honored.
Joining them were Lucho Aguilar (wrestling/grappling), jiu-jitsu’s Ella Olaso and Ellise Xoe Malilay, wushu’s Alexander Gabriel Delos Reyes and gymnast Jasmine Althea Ramilo.
Aielle Aguilar, a two-time jiu-jitsu world champion at six years old, brightened up the mood during the award rites along with fellow Blue Hydra Rising Stars Ayona Huerto of rowing, fencer Jodie Danielle Tan, jiu-jitsu’s Princess Reuma, cycling’s Maritanya Krog and chessers Mark Jay Bacojo, Christian Gian Karlo Arca and Zhaoyu Capilitan, among others.
Meanwhile, Asian pole vault king Ernest John “EJ” Obiena was feted as this year’s “Sports Idol” awardee.
“This has been a long time coming. I’m so excited and happy to know that there is a platform and a way to recognize the greatness of youth athletes,” Obiena said in a video message shown during the awards night.
This is Siklab’s third edition—and the first one since the Covid-19 pandemic struck—following its inaugural and second stagings in 2018 and 2019, respectively.