Adidas KOTR 2013: Interview with adidas King and Queen of the Road 2012

Monday, 24 June 2013  |  Interviews + Features, Race Announcements

All roads lead to adidas King of the Road 2013 on July 7, 2013 with the 10k and 16.8k race categories.  Runners of all shapes and sizes have been seriously training for the race and anticipating a well-attended event.  Among those that are expected to show off their running prowess on race day are two of the top elite runners in the country who are expected to defend their titles as King and Queen of the Road: Eduardo “Vertek” Buenavista and Mary Grace delos Santos.

I got to interview Vertek and Mary Grace to learn the secrets of these two winning runners.  (Hope you don’t mind. I translated them from Tagalog into English already):

Best times:

5k – 13:58.43  – 2002 Asian Games, Busan, South Korea
10k – 29:02.36 – 2002 Asian Games, Busan, South Korea
21k – 1:03.42 – Incheon, South Korea
42k – 2004 2:18:44 – Beppu Oita Marathon, Oita, Japan

– Eduardo Buenavista wins first place at adidas KOTR 2012 –

Best times:
5k – 17:44
10k – 37:49
21k – 1:20
42k – 2:49

–  Mary Grace delos Santos wins first place at adidas KOTR 2012 –

TBR: How long have you been running?

EB: I started my professional career as a runner last 2000 but I’ve been running since high school as a track and field athlete. I got to join the 1997 Palarong Pambansa when I was in 4th year high school in which I ran the 1500, 3000, and 5000 meter events.

MD: Since 9 year’s old up to the present.

TBR: What are the top medals you’ve earned from running?

EB: It was during the 1998 National open that I won 1st place in the 1500, 3000 and 5000 meter events.

MD: Malaysia Standard Marathon, Hong Kong Standard Marathon, 2012 KOTR Singapore Asia Championship, National Milo Marathon Final.

TBR: What distance do you enjoy running the most?

EB: I enjoy running the 10k distance. Short and easier to manage.

MD: 10k, 21k, and 42k.

TBR: Tell us more about your experience running adidas King of the Road last year.

EB: I joined the 16.8 distance and won 1st place for the Men’s Filipino category with a time of 54.39mins. By winning the Filipino category, I won Php 30,000 and was sent to Singapore to represent our country in the Adidas KOTR Southeast Asian Championship in which I won 1st place with a time of 53:12 minutes.

MD: I ran the 16.8k in 1 hour and 3 minutes. 
I won the cash prize and a trip to Singapore to represent the Philippines for KOTR Asia Championship. 

TBR: How did you train for adidas KOTR 2012?

EB: I was training for both Milo Marathon and adidas KOTR that time.  I did my speed workout in the morning and road race training almost everyday.

MD: I trained every day that time because I was preparing for the upcoming Milo National Finals.

TBR:  Are you ready for adidas KOTR 2013?  How’s training been for you?

EB:  Yes. So far so good. Right now I’m focusing on developing my speed in preparation for KOTR and also for SEA Games where I will compete in the full marathon event.

MD: I’m not as prepared this year for KOTR because I haven’t had much time to train due to work.

TBR:  Why did you decide to join KOTR 2013 again?

EB:  I want to defend my title here the Philippines as King of the Road but most especially I want to represent our country again in the KOTR Southeast Asian Championship.

MD: I joined the KOTR to participate and support the KOTR and I love to run.

TBR:  What advice can you give to other runners?

EB: To my fellow runners who want to achieve a better time, I only have a few words for them. Discipline, dedication and hard work are the keys to success.

MD: My only advice is that you should have self-discipline, proper training, and always listen to your coach. 


Aside from bumping into Vertek and Mary Grace on race day, there are other things to look forward to at adidas KOTR 2013.

For 2013, adidas opened a new category exclusively for students 25 years old and under. The 10K Relay for Students is set specifically to encourage the youth to get into a healthy, active lifestyle and to give them a chance to represent their alma mater.


On race day, adidas will also be rolling out BOOST™ to more of their adidas running products. It will come in more colors, too.  What is BOOST™? It’s a groundbreaking innovation in adidas footwear technology featuring superior cushioning that allows runners to store and unleash energy more efficiently with every stride. The new Energy Boost collection will be available worldwide at adidas Sport Performance stores and selected retailers on July 7, 2013, race day, at PHP 7995. Visit for more information.

adidas King of the Road will be on July 7, 2013 at Bonifacio Global City.  To register visit:

adidas King of the Road 2011

Friday, 28 October 2011  |  Race Reports

Before the recent running boom, adidas King of the Road was once one of the few most anticipated races in Manila.  It was a must run race because it stood out as one of the bigger, more organized events in Bonifacio Global City unlike the smaller races in Roxas Blvd. at that time.

With bigger, grander races to look forward to last year, I felt that adidas KOTR was losing its touch.  Sure it was still a good race, but how could it possibly stand out among other races?  Admittedly, I wasn’t that excited about running KOTR in 2010.  Actually, I missed it.

For this year, I signed up for the race expecting a typical road race despite the hullaballoo over the new 16.8km distance that I couldn’t quite wrap my brain around.  I expected an average race, definitely none of the KOTR magic of the earlier years.  Woah boy, was I pleasantly surprised.

I ran the 21k as a training run in preparation for New York City Marathon.  I ran with fellow NYC Marathoner and TBR Dream Alumni, Rico Manuel and his friend, Angela, for the first few kilometers.  Midway through the race, I bumped into friends, Ton and Angel of Gatorade, and we then spotted Lit.  We then saw Joey Torres of Polo Tri who will also run NYCM.  Joey and Lit ran at a faster clip, while Ton, Angel and I ran easy for the rest of the race.  Throughout the run, I spotted friends along the way, some new acquaintances, others I hadn’t seen for over a year!

– Good times! Running with Joey, Ton, and Lit. Thanks to Spongebob Runner for the image –

Sometimes, a race can be memorable because of our performance.  Other times it can stand out because of the features of the event and great execution of its organizers.  For this race, I found that it was special because it reminded me of the good ol’ days when running in a road race was such a positive, energizing experience because of the people you spotted along the way.  You knew half of the runners on the road and you crossed the finish line welcomed by even more familiar faces.  Sure the races were smaller and less extravagant, but hey they were filled with happy memories.

Thanks to adidas KOTR for making me all sentimental and reminding me of those special times in running.  (Tissue please!)  It’s wonderful to have the old and great adidas King of the Road back!


Adidas King of the Road on 23 October 2011

Wednesday, 14 September 2011  |  Race Announcements

There was a time when there were only a handful of well-organized races to look forward to in our running calendar for the year.  One of the top races on that list was the adidas King of the Road.

I joined in 2007, 2008, and 2009.  Here’s a photo of me way back in 2007.  Rebel me, I refused to wear the singlet only to blend in with the sea of red runners so I intentionally wore all blue…and the competing brand at that! Hah!  I blushed—or more like hid under the table in complete shame—when the people from Adidas (specifically Ms. Odette Velarde) emailed me this photo happily saying they spotted me in the crowd of thousands:

– adidas King of the Road 2007: I’m in blue with best running buddy Annie to my right. (Miss you Annie!) –

adidas King of the Road will be held in Manila this coming October 23, 2011 at the Bonifacio Global City.  adidas expects 4,000 runners for this event.


What makes this adidas King of the Road different is that it will be held in five countries across the region – Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Philippines. Each country is a qualifying leg towards the finals with the winner and runner-up of each country’s 16.8km category winning an all-expenses paid trip to the Philippines (do our Pinoy winners get a trip to all 4 other countries? hmmm) to compete with the best of the best in Southeast Asia.

WHY 16.8KM?

What makes the 16.8km distance special and why this distance?  adidas says: “You’ll be able to complete 2 marathons (84km) over five (5) countries with adidas KOTR 2011.”  Meaning, 16.8 km x 5 countries = 84 km which is equivalent to 2 marathons.

Hmm…With all due respect to adidas folks, but I’ve been trying to wrap my brain around this whole concept since the adidas KOTR press conference a few months back and I still don’t get it!  After all, we runners don’t add up all our races in one year and say: “I’ve run 20 half marathons this year so I’ve technically ran 10 marathons.”  I got so confused about this that I just registered for my tried, tested, and highly favored 21km.  (If any of you can clearly explain the 16.8 distance to me I’ll treat you to a frap after the race!)


KOTR features a different theme each year, and this year’s theme is entitled ‘Colours’. This is represented through the variety of different coloured adidas singlets participants will don. The multi-colour showcase is meant to demonstrate the vibrancy of the sports scene across Southeast Asia.

– adidas KOTR 2011 race bibs –

– adidas KOTR 2011 medals –

Registration is still open!  To register, visit the adidas King of the Road website for online credit card payment or drop by adidas stores for cash payments.

Event categories and race fees: P1,050 – 5km, P1,300 – 16.8km, P1,050 – 21k

Click HERE to download race FAQs.


2009 Adidas King of the Road

Tuesday, 27 October 2009  |  Race Reports


Overall rating (10 highest): 8
Organizer: Rudy Biscocho


• Organized start and finish.
• Nice singlets.
• Race started on time.
• Ample water and Gatorade stations.
• Festive race atmosphere with booths, fans, and food.

• Typical race route.
• Slow refill of water cups at stations (but no biggie!)
• Inconvenient and chaotic race packet redemption.

The Adidas King of the Road has always been one of the must-run races on most serious runners’ lists the past years. The Adidas KOTR for 2009, last Sunday, only solidified its reputation as one of the most consistent and best organized races held in Manila.

Over 8,000 runners showed up at Bonifacio High Street last Sunday, majority of whom donned the scintillating yellow Adidas singlet. Despite the large population of runners, the assembly area was void of confusion or crowding; there were clear directions for check-in, enough restrooms at BHS to accommodate everyone, and the atmosphere was festive yet organized.

The race itself was clean and simple enough for runners to simply focus on enjoying the run. Water and Gatorade were overflowing and the course was safe from traffic and pollution.

Congratulations to Adidas and Mr. Rudy Biscocho for giving runners another wonderful race. Until next year!


– Adidas KOTR race start –


I knew I wouldn’t be able to get up that morning. We arrived from Subic at 11 p.m., slept at 1 a.m. and woke up dizzily at 4 a.m. I registered for 21k but I was in no shape to run one. Yawn. By the time we arrived at Bonifacio High Street, I saw the 21k runners pass us by while we were still looking for parking. Wow, it was an amazing sight. Instantly, I was jolted out of my zombie state and was all set to run.

Hubby and I were together from beginning to end. We planned for an easy pace (not that there was any other choice given that we were tired from the run the night before.) The start of the race was vibrant and exciting. Runners cheered and counted down to the start of the 10k race.


Our run was just a pleasurable 10k run all the way. The race route was familiar so there were absolutely no surprises along the way, except for friends who we bumped into on the road, such as Toby of Runnr who startled us from behind, or Vince of Finish Line who silently crept up and ran by my side.

It was nice to see the 21k runners heading back as we 10k runners made our way towards Buendia: Ani de Leon in 3rd place and full race mode and several Subic International Marathon Finishers such as Mari, Lester, and Charlie.


As we neared the finish, I increased the pace and ended the run at 59 minutes. No pressures, no rush, all fun!



– with Ironwoman Ani de Leon –

– with Tanya Lara, Vimz, hubby, and Bobby –

– with Team Hardcore peeps: Margaret, Lester and Mari –

* Thanks to Paolo Sauler for the race start photo.

Missing Guy After Adidas King of The Road, Malaysia

Monday, 3 August 2009  |  Race Announcements

I received this disturbing note as a comment on my blog…  

Gary is missing. He didn’t show up after the run and he even left his belongings and car. Everyone (organisers, family and friends) are looking for him. There is a youtube video of him collapsing at the stadium, but the paramedics said that they let him go after checking him. But no one has found him till now.

Name: Gary Leon Robert
IC number: 870818145695
Running no: A793

Click here to watch the video of Gary collapsing at the stadium.

Anyone with information, please call 012-3802133 OR 016-977 8919.

3 August 2009

First I thought it was a hoax until I checked the source of the video, Runwitme, a credible runner and an online friend since I started blogging.

While we cannot do much from where we are here in Manila to help, I thought of posting it to serve as a reminder for all of us runners to always be careful during races.  We never know what can happen.  

UPDATE (AUGUST 6, 2009):

The Star Online
Nine Over Ten blog

Safety tips I would recommend:

  1. Join a race with a buddy or a group.
  2. Wear a Road ID or any kind of identification.
  3. Park in well lit areas or near the guard.
  4. Carry only what you’ll need during the race.  No need for expensive jewelry or gadgets.
  5. Tuck a small amount of cash in your pocket for emergencies.
  6. Inform someone at home where the race will be held and what time you’ll be back (if you’re running alone.)
  7. Consider including mace in your gym bag.

Feel free to add more tips I may have missed.

I hope they find Gary soon.