By ADRIAN STEWART CO
Ilonggo cyclist Patrick Coo bucked an early fall to capture a bronze medal in the Bicycle Motocross (BMX) racing event of the 19th Asian Games in Chun’an, China on Sunday afternoon, October 1.
Coo, who traced his roots from Iloilo City, scraped the upper part of his right thigh after crashing in the first moto of the 12-cyclist finals, but went on to salvage a bronze medal finish.
“I feel very happy, I went straight to the biggest one, the Asian Games,” Coo said.
“However, I am hurting for sure. I ripped my pants in the process and got it fixed immediately,” the 21-year-old cyclist said.
“I’m fast at everything, but I get so much adrenalin most of the time. I need to take it step by step, by staying calm more on the bike,” Coo, who is based from Switzerland, added.
Capturing the gold medal is Japanese cyclist Asuma Nakai, a junior bronze medalist in the Union Cycliste Internationale World Championships, while taking home the silver medal is Komet Sukpraset of Thailand.
With Coo’s bronze, the Philippines had a medal in each of the last three Asian Games — Danny Caluag won the country’s one and only gold medal in Incheon 2014 and got bronze in Indonesia five years ago.
The 36-year-old Caluag, who was recovering from a broken rib injury, also participated in this year’s competition and was in the thick of the race, but was shoved to sixth place in the finals.
Meanwhile, boxer Eumir Marcial assured himself of a medal finish in the men’s 80-kilogram division after a second-round stoppage victory over Thai fighter Weerapon Jongjoho in the quarterfinals on Sunday night.
Marcial, a bronze medal winner during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, connected a crushing right hook to send Jongjoho crashing to the canvas to secure his place in the semifinals round.
Marcial will next face Turabek Khabibullalev of Uzbekistan in the semifinals round on Wednesday afternoon, October 4, for a chance to reach the finals and qualify for a spot in the 2024 Paris Olympics./ASC, WDJ