How Many Filipinos qualify for Rio 2016?
I am going to ask not just the athletic community and the sports community
How many athletes are going to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics from the Philippines?
The Question comes in light of the headlines in the Manila Bulletin, Tribune, and Inquirer and other leading newspapers. So I will tease the media people with my insight here.
As the Philippines has very few qualifiers which is surprising as its a country of 101 million (as of 2015). I will also cover other sports.
This article is partly a follow up of my article on ‘Only Three Filipinos in Track and Field would make it to Olympics today based on the 2012 Olympics standards. You can review this article here.
Lydia De Vega 11.28 (1987) would still make the Olympics 28 years later as the standard is 11.32. In 2012 this was an Olympic A Standard (11.29). However her time of 23.37 in the 200 meters would not be good enough for today (23.20).
Isidro Del Prado Sr. (45.57, 1985) who would qualify based on 2012 when there was a B Standard at 45.90, would no longer make the 45.40 requirement. Sad to say since then our 400 meter guys have not got faster than Del Prado time which set 30 years ago.
Marestella Torres who was a ‘legitimate qualifier’ in 2012 not a token delegate as we had relied on before leap 6.71m at the 2011 SEA Games. Her mark was well above the 6.65 meter B Standard requirement in 2012. Marestella who is the only active athlete left of these three at 34, will need to repeat her performance from the 2011 SEA Games.
Eric Cray on the other hand has achieved the qualifying standard for the 2016 Olympics in the 400 Hurdles three times. In 2012 we can say De Vega, Del Prado, and Torres would have qualified. In 2016 its De Vega, Torres and Cray. As the standards are increasing faster than our level of performance we are even having to scour the history books to draw up an interesting article.
Who is Qualified?
As of now only SEA Games 400 Hurdle Record Holder Cray is definitely qualified. In Swimming Chloie Isleta has surpassed the Olympic B Standard in the 400 Individual Medley however the meet may not have been an olympic qualifying meet. In Weight lifting 2013 SEA Games Silver medalist Hildilyn Diaz performance in her new trimmer weight category is good enough for a top four finish.
Important to note Cray and Isleta are both Fil-Heritage athletes and Hidilyn Diaz comes via local programs. Although Cray has participated in the 2013 and 2014 Philippine National Games held in Pasig.
You can read information on these three athletes in the articles below.
Other Athletes in Athletics
According to the news PATAFA has had plans to include 8 athletes in total (presumably Cray) in there hopes for Olympic Qualification with the deadlines listed at bottom of article. The closest qualifiers perhaps are three female athletes 17 year old SEA Games Champion Kayla Richardson (23.67 needs 23.20), and Long Jumpers SEA Games Record Holder Marestella Torres, 34 (needs 6.70m , PB is 6.71, 2011, 6.53 this year) and possibly Katherine Khay Santos , 25 (needs 6.70m, PB is 6.40m), Bronze at 2011 SEA Games Long Jump. Also SEA Games Silver medalist Mary Joy Tabal, 26 whose PB of 2:48.00 is from 2013, will need to bring her time down by 6 minutes to 2:42.00.
In the Mens SEA Games Silver medalist 20 year old Ernest Obiena who will need to bring his PB from 5.30 to 5.70 and is currently under going training in Italy.
The good news for all of the above except maybe Marestella is that if they dont make it in 2016, in 2020 they will still be young enough to have another go. Kayla and Ernest will be 21 and 25 in 2020, Santos will be 30. Tabal 31.
The qualifying period for the 10,000 m, marathon, walks, and combined events starts from January 1, 2015 to July 11, 2016; for the remaining events, it is from May 1, 2015 to July 11, 2016
Athletics will run August 12 to 21 in Rio.