Sunday, November 9, 2014

Subaru Palm Challenge 2014: Philippine Team Holding Strong

Photo by Ulysses Ang
The MediaCorp Subaru Challenge 2014 - The Asian Face-Off, now in its 13th year, kick-started today with contenders struggling against harsh weather conditions to outlast each other. The blistering heat and humid temperatures early in the afternoon proved too much for some contestants, resulting in only 176 remaining with a chance of winning a Subaru XV worth P 1,298,000.

The regional contestants remained strong with loud cheers and encouragement, with majority of the cheering coming from the Philippine contingent. The Philippine team had met prior to the Challenge to discuss tactics and promised to motivate each other over the four days. Throughout Day One, their morale maintained at an all-time high through entertaining each other with jokes and dancing to their favorite songs.

“I strongly believe that this year’s winner will be from the Philippines. This Challenge is not just a mental game but also one that requires a lot of puso (heart). This year, the Philippines team stepped into the ring with a lot of heart and we feel that is what makes us stand out from the rest,” said 31-year-old IT Manager Carlo Talahib from the Philippines.

Cloudier conditions and a gentle breeze in the late afternoon offered contestants some relieve from the heat, as participants from Singapore, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam endured to keep their palm on one of ten Subaru Imprezas stationed at Ngee Ann City Civic Plaza.

The Challenge's oldest contestant, 70-year-old Ms Vivien Tan, who entered the competition for the seventh time this year, remained smiling and dancing, prepared to go into the second day on a high.
“I really look forward to the Challenge every year as it gives me a reason to stay healthy and active. At the same time, I get the opportunity to meet people from all across the region. I hope to beat my personal time last year of 24 hours. I could have held on for longer last year, but I had a Church service to attend,” said Ms Tan.

The remaining contestants will give their best to battle exhaustion, unforgiving weather conditions, sleep deprivation, hunger and thirst while keeping their right palms firmly within the surface area of the palm decals with a 5-minute break given once every 6 hours - at 7pm, 1am, 7am and 1pm throughout the competition.

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