Palaweño athlete Kevin Dador Pascua cracked a new world record Wednesday for the 100-meter obstacle course race (OCR) category in the Southeast Asian Games (SEAG) 2019 and won a gold medal for it.
Kevin trimmed down the 43-second race time set by an American in 2018 to 29 seconds to win in the sports competition that tested his endurance, strength, speed, and dexterity.
Born and raised in Barangay San Pedro, Puerto Princesa City, Kevin said that he is a newbie in OCR, pointing out that he only started his career last summer.
“Before, I was only an ultimate frisbee player and a mountain climber. Just this summer, my friend invited me to try out. Hindi ko naman alam na qualifier na pala ‘yon,” he said.
Pilipinas Obstacle Sports Federation (POSF) had three qualifiers this year. The sports body pushed hard to include OCR in the SEAG, which needed at least four participating countries to debut.
POSF president and lawyer Al Agra, in a press statement, said that it was the collective efforts of coaches, athletes, federation members, and officers that yielded OCR’s debut in SEA Games (SEAG).
Kevin, an alumnus of the Holy Trinity University (HTU) and Palawan State University (PSU), said that the Team Pilipinas OCR, which is composed of 16 athletes, was overwhelmed with the support it received as the sport is new in SEAG.
“There were four countries: Malaysia, Indonesia, Laos, and the Philippines. Nakakatuwa na ang daming Pilipino ‘yong sumuporta,” he said.
Pascua was able to finish the obstacle course composed of step-balance, trampoline, monkey bars, rigs, low crawl, cliff hanger, Tarzan swing, and wave wall (list not exhaustive) in 29 seconds, or 14 seconds faster than the record previously set by an American in 2018 in the OCR World Championship Record.
OCR was only an exhibition sports match prior to its inclusion as a medal event in SEAG.
Team Pilipinas earlier this year were invited in China, Japan, and Russia for exhibition matches as the POSF and OCR World Federation push for its inclusion in the Olympics.