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TABUK CITY, Kalinga – To kick-start the 16th Matagoan Festival and 10th City Founding Anniversary, the Matagoan Call or “Ayag” was held on June 17, Saturday.
According to “Ayag” and Fun Bike Committee Chair Marco Pagtud, the “Ayag” is a Kalinga tradition that informs the public of the start of a public occasion.
He said that in the past, native dancers, drum and lyre bands and the sirens from fire trucks, police cars, and ambulances were used for the purpose but for this year, bike groups were invited.
To promote the City’s rich natural ambiance, the bike groups led by Man Pedal Tako Kalinga (MaPeTaK)-Tabuk started the Fun Bike in the early morning en route from the City Hall to Bantay then to Dupag where the bikers rested and had lunch and then biked back to the City Hall.
There were 300 participants from seven groups namely Team Climb Baguio City (TCBC), Apayao Bikers Club (ABC), MaPeTaK-Rizal, MaPeTaK-Tabuk, Kalinga Bikers, Inc. (KBI), Isabela Bikers (IB), the PNP and United Bikers Association Tuguegarao (UBAT).
The activity was composed of three categories: Junior A (below 20 years), Junior B (21-35 years old) and Senior A (above 36 years).
Top three winners for the Junior A category were Diether Sto. Thomas (UBAT), SilvesterLumatic (MaPeTaK-Tabuk) and James Paul Sobredo (TCBC); Marvin Corpuz and Nathan Uvero, both from UBAT, and Dominador Asuncion (IB) for the Junior B category and FlorantePagulayan (UBAT), Noel Pilacano and Frederick Badinas, both from TCBC, for the Senior A category.
Three special awards namely the First Female Finisher, First Youngest Finisher and First Oldest Finisher were won by Jessa Jeanne Buen (17 years old-MaPeTaKTabuk), RayenNacino (9 years old- TCBC), and Rommel Pedro (57 years old- CBC), respectively.
“I almost felt like giving up along the way but I survived the challenge and very happy to be the first female to finish the race,” Buen exclaimed.
The activity ended with a raffle draw of one brand new mountain bike won by April Duruin of the City Scholarship Office.
There were no reported major injuries but there were bikers who had cramps and did not finish the race.
By Darwin S. Serion