Philippines ready to compete in upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, January 12, 2022
Adjust font size:

MANILA, Jan. 12 (Xinhua) -- Asa Miller, a 21-year-old Filipino Alpine skier, is ready to compete in the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics next month, Philippine Olympic officials said on Wednesday.

U.S.-based Filipino-American Miller met the qualification threshold for the slalom and giant slalom events.

Jim Palomar Apelar, president of the Philippine Ski and Snowboard Federation, said Miller secured his second starting Winter Olympics berth after meeting the qualifying score of 160 points or lower for each of the two events.

Miller represented the Philippines in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, ranking 70th out of 110 contestants.

Apelar said Miller's performance is better three years after the 2018 Winter Olympics. "He is older now. He has gotten a lot better. His points have greatly decreased," Apelar told a virtual press conference, adding that the lower the points, the better in the Alpine scoring system.

"[Miller] is competing right now and doing very well. These last few competitions were more for tuning up," Apelar said.

The International Ski Federation granted the Philippines one quota slot in the two events.

As the sole Filipino athlete competing in Beijing, Miller will carry the Philippine flag at the opening ceremony on February 4, and his last competition is on February 14.

"We are excited that [Miller] is given an opportunity to participate in Beijing. We believe that this is just the beginning of what is to come," Apelar added.

Abraham Tolentino, the Philippines Olympic Committee president, said the Philippines is "very lucky to have qualified for the Beijing Winter Olympics," adding that it is rare for tropical countries to join such events.

Tolentino expressed hope that Miller's participation in Beijing will help establish a grassroots program to develop more Alpine skiers to represent the Philippines in the Winter Olympics and international winter sports competitions.

"We look forward to more athletes joining future winter events," Tolentino said in an online briefing, expressing hope the Philippines' participation in Beijing will inspire more youths to dive into winter sports.

The Philippines hopes to recruit and train more Filipino youths, including those living abroad, to participate in winter sports and represent the Southeast Asian country in the future.

The Olympics will take place amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. "The preparation is superb," Tolentino said. To keep the participants safe, he said the organizers have strict health protocols, including daily swab testing.

Bones Floro, the chef de mission of the Philippine delegation to Beijing, said the Philippine team will strictly abide by the health protocols. "The Chinese people have been very gracious to host the event, so we will act in a manner to protect the Chinese people as well," he said.

The Philippines is yet to win a medal at the Winter Olympics. Apelar and Tolentino hope that the Philippines' participation in Beijing Winter Olympics "is just the beginning."

"We're looking forward in four years to have four disciplines and hopefully between four to eight athletes. The more disciplines that we participate in, someone will emerge from there and win our first medal," Apelar said. Enditem

Follow on Twitter and Facebook to join the conversation.
ChinaNews App Download
Print E-mail Bookmark and Share

Go to Forum >>0 Comment(s)

No comments.

Add your comments...

  • User Name Required
  • Your Comment
  • Enter the words you see:   
    Racist, abusive and off-topic comments may be removed by the moderator.
Send your storiesGet more from