MANILA, Philippines - Sunrise Events, Inc., organizer of the Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines in Cebu last weekend, yesterday said the relay biker who passed away during the race died of natural causes and not by accident.
In a statement, Sunrise said that Ramon Igana Jr., a load controller at Cebu Pacific at Mactan and the designated biker of Team Tights Bugdo-Extreme in the swim-bike-run race, died of acute pulmonary embolism that led to his spill.
“Despite the resounding success of the Ironman 70.3 event last Sunday, there was a fatality involving Ramon Igana, Jr, 44 years old, Cebuano and a relay participant on the bike segment,” said Sunrise.
“The autopsy revealed that the cause of death was acute pulmonary embolism leading to his bike fall.
“The entire Ironman community expresses its deepest sympathies to Ramon’s family and loved ones,” it added.
After Benjamin Balaoro Jr. finished the 1.9-km swim, Igana took over but took a spill while tackling the 90.1-km bike covering the cities of Lapu-Lapu, Cebu, Mandaue, and Talisay through the South Road Properties. Witnesses said he hit his head on a concrete gutter.
Marshalls said they earlier saw Igana struggle with his bike before he fell.
He was pronounced dead on arrival after rescuers from the Talisay Rescue Emergency Assistance Team (TREAT) rushed him to the Chong Hua Hospital in Cebu City.