TAGAYTAY, Philippines – After opening his campaign with a disappointing loss, Filipino BMX rider Daniel Caluag copped a silver in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games BMX men's elite racing on Tuesday, December 10 at Tagaytay Extreme Sports Complex.
The 2014 Asian Games gold medalist topped the seven-man race in the first run but fell short to gold medalist Komet Sukprasert of Thailand in the second and third runs.
"It was a good performance today," said Caluag. "Not what I wanted but I executed as much as I can and end up getting second place. [Sukprasert] was a better athlete today."
The 32-year old BMX rider, though, admitted that performing in front of Filipinos isn’t easy.
"I'd say probably one of the hardest events because of [the pressure from] all the support, but at the same time it was the greatest feeling to have all the support behind your back."
Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler
Caluag now sets his eyes on a qualifying event for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
"It's right around the corner, about 6 months from now is the qualification," Caluag said. "I know what I need to prepare with my coach and my team and we're gonna take it step-by-step and make sure that we stay healthy going in to it."
Another Thai rider Somkid Haratawan nabbed the bronze medal while Caluag’s younger brother, Christopher John, came a bit short of the podium and settled for 4th place.
The Caluag brothers had a rough run on Monday in the time trial event as Daniel ended at No. 4, clocking 32.689s, just milliseconds behind bronze medalist Sittichok Kaewsrikhao of Thailand, who finished in 32.601s. Christopher John slid to 6th with a time pf 34.178s.
Thailand's Komet Sukprasert locked in the gold medal after clocking 32.028s while Indonesian Toni Syarifudin got silver after a 32.560 clocking.
BMX Racing - Men's Elite Results
1st - Daniel Caluag (PHI - 33.423 seconds)
2nd - Komet Sukprasert (THA - 33.460 seconds)
3rd -Somkid Haratawan (THA - 33.800 seconds)
1st - Komet Sukprasert (THA - 31.960 seconds)
2nd - Daniel Caluag (PHI - 32.740 seconds)
3rd - Somkid Haratawan (THA - 32.891 seconds)
1st - Komet Sukprasert (THA - 32.197 seconds)
2nd - Daniel Caluag (PHI - 33.028 seconds)
3rd - CJ Caluag (PHI - 33.884 seconds)
Gold - Komet Sukprasert (4)
Silver - Daniel Caluag (5)
Bronze - Somkid Haratawan (10)