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I am a Bicolano by birth and choice. By any standards, I am a slow runner but I like it that way. I look at running as a healthy and exciting way to make a difference. Together with my fellow runners from our family, school, office and the community, we use running to give back..

August 15, 2014

DC2DC TK ULTRA 60: Q & A with the Organizer

Penguins graphicsSince 2012, I have harboured the desire to run an ultra marathon each in the Visayas and Mindanao. 

Our country is an archipelago and it is just right that a Pinoy  runner dreams of this endeavor. It would be a pity if one cannot get to taste the exciting and vibrant running atmosphere from the north to the south of these 7,000 islands we use to collectively call the Pearl of the Orient.

Finally one half of that dream is nearing fruition.  I have registered for the Digos City to Davao City (DC2DC) ultra marathon (60 kms) scheduled for September 6-7, 2014. This is a treat considering that Davao City and the  neighboring provinces are blessed with fabulous natural attractions like Mt. Apo and Samal Island and the area is a bastion of peace and order.  Plus, this will be an introductory immersion for me to the lively running scene in the south.

Route map of DC2DC
I have many people to thank for this good fortune.  First of course are my bosses in First Balfour.  Our company will be joining the PHILCONSTRUCT convention in Davao City this September 4-6.  I will be part of the team that will be manning our exhibit booth in this convention.  At least, my airfare going to Davao is taken care of already. Second are my Ateneo de Naga HS Batch 1983 batchmates Ernie Badong and Ed Balcueva who, without blinking their eyes, said yes to joining me in this adventure. Third is  newly-found relative Allan Claudio de Lima who,  being based in Southern Mindanao, encouraged me to join this ultra. He even promised to pace with me the whole length of the 60-km ultra.  Will see if he keeps his word but if he doesn’t I would understand given that the Bicolano Penguin is really slow. It takes patience of biblical proportions to be able to endure with my waddling speed.

Ernie, Bicolano Penguin and Ed looking forward to a lot of ultra marathons in the south, including one in Davao
Lastly, I would like to thank the DC2DC organizers – Team Kapwa, in particular one of its leaders, Paul Aldaba for the super accommodating stance in dealing with interested participants, especially inquisitive ones like me.  One could feel a  hospitable and proactive ambiance  on the part of the organizers and other Davao-based runners like the Red Butterfly. Proof of such can-do spirit is the patience that Paul exhibited in responding to the questions I emailed him last week. My idea was to share this Q&A to give the readers a feel of DC2DC and its organizers.   

About DC2DC     
BP: What is the inspiration behind the decision by Team Kapwa to organize the DC2DC?  Why Digos City?  

As Team Kapwa was founded by group of marathoners who wish to level up in running which led them to explore the longer distance called ultramarathon races, and found a new joy in it, they created the TK DC2DC Ultramarathon 60 to share their passion for running ultramarathons to other runners, and those who wish to try the somewhat impossible ultramarathon distance. (
http://runroo.com/2014/08/01/davao-running-group-7-things-about-team-kapwa-of-tk-dc2dc-ultramarathon-60/) Why Digos City? The event is part of the Digos City Fiesta Celebration and Digos City is one of the hometowns of our Race Director.

BP: Sometimes,  fun runs and marathons are organized to raise funds for a certain charity or initiative.  Is this the case with DC2DC?  Is there a beneficiary community or charity foundation?

PA: Yes. One of our future plans is that to go to a certain community here in Davao and conduct medical and dental mission to them.

BP: For the DC2DC, did Team Kapwa form a particular task force  or committee to handle the management/execution of this ultra marathon?

PA: Yes, all of us are part of the committee. The team is composed of 26 members and all of us have specific task for the said event.

Team Kapwa members doing recon run of the DC2DC route (Photo courtesy of Team Kapwa facebook page)
BP: How many runners are expected to run in the DC2DC?  Are there foreign participants?

PA: We do expect around 100-150 runners and as of now, there are no foreign participants registered yet.

BP: By island group (Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao), what is the profile of the registered participants for DC2DC? How many are from Luzon?  From the Visayas? And from Mindanao?

PA: In percentage, I think the majority will come from Mindanao, I think it will be Luzon: 5%, Visayas: 10% and Mindanao: 85%.

BP: Any particular feature of DC2DC that will make it unique or differentiate it from other ultras?

PA: The route itself and the view when you reached the 50k marker, you can see the Davao Gulf and if it will be around 5-6am, you can see the glimpse of Mt. Apo from the 50k marker or in the Shrine hills.

BP: Are the roads from Digos City to Davao City predominantly concrete road?  Or asphalt road?

PA: The route will be concrete road and portions might be asphalt road.

BP: What explains the significant gain in elevation in the last portion of the 60km ultra marathon?

PA: Because we want to give the runners some challenge and something the runners can remember when they finish the race that the route is not an easy one. Because 60k is 60k!

Elevation profile of DC2DC ultra

BP: What is the  finish  cut off time?

PA: 12 hours cut off time.

BP: Are support vehicles allowed?

PA: Yes, they are allowed.

BP: Would durian be served at one of the water stations?

PA: We are hoping to have durian and other Davao Fruits to be served in one of our food/water stations.


BP: When was Team Kapwa started? Who were the founding members? Who are the current officers of Team Kapwa?

PA: The founding date of the team was last September 8, 2014. From Davao City, the team made it official in Gen. Santos City Tuna Festival Duathlon and Tuna Fest Half Marathon, where they represent Team Kapwa for the first time. The founding members are: Paul, Garry, Jay, JJ, Robert, Griffton, Rod, Roland, Kenneth, Dante, Eric, Jojo and Peter Mars.

Team Kapwa group picture
BP: Why the name Team Kapwa? 

PA: “Kapwa” in Team Kapwa’s original meaning is not “fellow” but “hayahay” or relax/chill in English. At the Michelle Estuar’s running clinic, some of the founding members were just standing at the sideline watching the other runners working hard for the drills. So one of them noticed their being very chill commented, “Kapwa kaayo sila kay hayahay kaayo. (You are all “kapwa” because you are all so chill.)” But the word “kapwa” with the meaning of relax originated from a local radio station in Davao which aired an ad that said something like “Basta kapwa, hayahay.”

BP: How many members does Team Kapwa have?

PA: 26 members

BP: Do you have regular membership fees for Team Kapwa members?

PA: No, we don’t have as of the moment.

BP: We notice a vibrant running community in Davao City and surrounding areas. To what factor(s) do you attribute this?

PA: We are friends with other running teams in Davao City and we do cooperate and participate in their runs since we are also runners and we do understand what runners feel during on the road.

BP: In addition to organizing long distance running events, what does Team Kapwa do to promote the development and progress of running in Davao City?

PA: Since we join running events outside of Davao City, we do have this club called Ultra Runners Club of Davao to which all members of the said group came from different running teams also and when we join ultramarathons outside the city, we bring the name of Davao.

BP: Does Team Kapwa organize running clinics for the general public in Davao City?

PA: Right now, we do not have such activity since we are focused on organizing running events.

BP: Is DC2DC the first ultra marathon that Team Kapwa has organized?  Prior to DC2DC, what are the running events that Team Kapwa has organized?

PA: DC2DC is the first UM that TK has organized.

BP: What is the longest running event that Paul Aldaba has joined?  A full marathon? An ultra marathon?

PA: The longest running event that I joined was last March 2014 which was the TDR80k Ultra marathon (hosted by Team Davao Runners). I already joined 2 ultramarathon events. My first was last year, November 2013 which was Samal Ultramarathon 50k. Also, I’ve done 5 Full Marathons since 2013 and counting.

There you have it.  Straightforward answers from Paul of  Team Kapwa Davao.  You could taste the bona fide passion for running. This is a promising sign that the DC2DC is and will be a well-organized   ultra marathon event.

It will be colorful.  It will be vista-rich. It will be fun. It will be worth the trip to Davao.

So for those interested to join, the registration is still open.  You have  up to August 22 to pick up the challenge and dare to conquer.

Penguins graphics


For more information on how to register for DC2DC, kindly visit https://www.facebook.com/events/655217577886951/permalink/660355390706503/.

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