MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines has broken a world record for most number of participants in a foot race after over 116,000 Filipinos participated in a historic race to save the Pasig River.
Gina Lopez, ABS-CBN Foundation director, said a total of 160,000 runners signed up for the historic “10.10.10 A Run for the Pasig River” on Sunday but only 116,086 runners finished the race.
"We have 160,000 names and gave out 160,000 bids but the count at the finish line is 116,086 so I think we have broken the world record," she said, quoting official figures by auditing firm Sycip, Gorres and Velayo (SGV).
“10.10.10 A Run for the Pasig River” breaks the existing Guinness World Record for the most participants in a footrace set by San Francisco’s “Bay to Breakers” race in 1988. It also breaks the official Philippine record of most number of runners in a foot race at 30,000.
Lopez said the foundation will forward all videos and documentation to Guinness World Records as part of the requirements in setting a new world record. She said she expects the official announcement on the new world record to be released in 2 weeks.
The ABS-CBN Foundation director said SGV used a total of 127 counters to get the complete number of participants who finished the race.
Contingents from schools, religious groups, government agencies, the police and military, non-government organizations, business sector, and private institutions made up the enormous crowd that gathered at the run’s three starting points: near the SM Mall of Asia (MOA), the CCP Complex, and Ayala Avenue in Makati.
Among the participants and supporters were former Philippine President Fidel V. Ramos, Vice-President Jejomar Binay, Mayors Alfredo Lim of Manila and Antonino Calixto of Pasay, Metro Manila Development Authority Chairman Francis Tolentino, boxing superstar and Sarangani Rep. Manny Pacquiao, El Shaddai leader Bro. Mike Velarde, and President Aquino's sister, Ballsy Aquino-Cruz.
Richard Sulaño and Keizel Pedriña ruled the male and female categories in the 3k race while Mervin Guarte and Mhe Ann Barcena took home the biggest prizes in the 5k race. Alquin Bolivar and Dalin Karmil dominated the 10k category.
Lopez said she was very happy with the results of the race, which sought to create awareness and raise funds for the massive Pasig River clean-up campaign.
"It was peaceful, happy. Anything could have happened. Also, last year there was so much litter after the race but this time, wala. Walang masyadong kalat at nagtutulakan," she said.
She added: "Today we showed what the Filipinos could do together. We showed that we could do things peacefully. We could do this every year until the river is clean. We are going to keep running until the Pasig is clean."