NARVACAN, Ilocos Sur Mayor Luis “Chavit” Singson yesterday exhorted the national shooting team to deliver, offering P250,000 for every gold medal won in the 30th Southeast Asian Games set to start this weekend.
“I wish them all the luck and pray that we will win as one,” Singson, president of the Philippine National Shooting Association and the League of Municipalities of the Philippines, said after giving a pep talk to national shooters who paid a courtesy call on him at his residence in Quezon City.
Singson, also a practical shooter, said the shooting team has a good chance of winning in at least six events, noting the fact that the team emerged as the top Southeast Asian country in the recent Asian Shooting Championships in Doha, Qatar, finishing seventh out of 14 Asian teams overall.
He said trap shooters Carlos Carag and Hagen Topacio qualified for the next year’s Tokyo Olympics and other team members – trap shooter Eric Ang, rifle shooters Jayson Valdez, Amparo Acuña, Denise Basila and Sean Jayfred Ocampo; pistol shooters Shanin Lyn Gonzales, Juliette Rose Arellano, Marcelo Gonzales, and Angelo Michael Fernandez – have what it takes in the games featuring 530 events in 56 sports disciplines.
Singson also lauded PNSA vice president Irene Garcia, coaches Julius Valdez, Fernando Mercado, Susan Aguado and armorer Mario Dasalla for their roles in steering the shooters in Asian championship.
Mercado had expressed confidence in the trapshooting squad members because their scores at the Asian championship were equivalent to gold medals in the individual and team competitions in the SEA Games.
Singson said his wards, who will participate in the Rifle 10m, Pistol 10m, Benchrest Rifle Shooting, Precision Pistol Competition, MS and Moving Target category, will contribute to the country’s bid to win 274 gold medals in the Games, a target set by leaders of various National Sports Associations.