The winners took home medals and trophies as well as P50,000 in cash prize for the winning team, P35,000 for the second-place and P25,000 for the third placers.
Finishers took home, P10,000 as a consolation prize.
The Tankers took off from the traditional spot at Sarangani Energy Corporation’s (SEC) jetty in Maasim town and swam to the shores of Beach View Resort in Tango, Glan.
“We have always been supportive of events such as this because Sarangani Energy gets to showcase the beauty of Sarangani Bay especially with the conservation efforts that we have mounted for the bay,” Renan Garcia, Community Relations Officer for SEC said.
“Sarangani Energy is very proud of how we have helped foster the growth and protection of Sarangani Bay, we can see the natural flora has flourished and the fishes and fauna have returned. Some swimmers are even joined by dolphins,” Garcia added.
The race course spanned 15-kilometers in length and was made more challenging by rolling waves and a steady sea breeze.
“Kailangan mo mag-focus kasi pwede ka dalhin ng waves palayo sa target mo na lugar,” said Thea Canda, a swimmer from Dadiangas Torpedoes.
Canda a decorated swimmer and two-time speed record holder for 400m Freestyle was just one of the 50 swimmers to successfully hurdle the course.
She was joined by famed Philippine Swim Team member Erica Lukang.
“We joined this event because it looks fun and challenging, and malay niyo maka-recruit kami ng new members para sa national team,” Lukang said.
This year also saw the debut of the Mlang Torpedoes, the youngest team to ever take part in the Swim Across the Bay Competition.
Dionela Xandra Cubita, from the said team, was officially declared the youngest at 9-years old.
“Medyo nahirapan po ang team namin, pero masaya pa rin kasi natapos namin yung competition kahit last place,” Cubita said.
This year also saw the debut of Sarangani Energy Corps. (SEC) swim team, composed of security personnel of the company led by their coach, Rey Balibagoso.
The 12-year old Swim Across the Bay makes a comeback this year, along with other events after missing out last year because the whole festival was canceled.
“Ang saya kasi despite being cancelled last year, ang dami pa ring nag-join this year, we even had to turn away some teams because we can no longer handle the logistics,” Nemrad Butil, contest facilitator said. (Jed Reston/SARBAY COMMS SERVICE)