DAGUPAN CITY – The Balon Dagupan Swimming team again proved its dominance when it was adjudged as overall champion during the Philippine Swimming Incorporated’s 2019 Grand Prix CNL-CAR Long Course Qualifying Leg held in the city from April 6 to 7.

This after the team ranked first among 11 clubs comprising of 113 participants from North Central Luzon and Cordillera Administrative Region for it to grab the overall title.

MDSF Vikings Swim Club was adjudged first runner-up while Torpedo Ray Swim Club earned the second runner-up honor.

Balon Dagupan athletes under the 10 years old and under age group also hauled 24 gold medals during the competition.

Dagupan City Sports Commission (DCSC) Vice Chair Finnela T. Sim disclosed that this was the fourth consecutive overall title won by the city for the qualifiers.

She added that as a PSI sanctioned event, the times set by the swimmers during the competition were recorded in the Philippine Swimming National Records.

Swimmers who were able to meet at least one of the qualifying times set by the PSI are eligible to swim in the 2019 PSI Grand Prix Long Course Swimming Championships on July 5 to 7.

The PSI qualifying leg is among other sports events such as Windsurfing Cup, Kickboxing Open, Golf Open and Open Boxing Championship and others that are being held as part of the month-long celebration of this year’s Bangus Festival.

“I’m very thankful to Mayor Belen T. Fernandez for giving the children the opportunity to compete in this event. Hindi na nila kailangan lumayo pa para lang makapag-qualify for national events such as these. Napakalaking tulong po ito sa swimmers hindi lang sa Dagupan, kundi pati na rin sa swimmers ng Central Northern Luzon and CAR, “ said Sim.

Corollary to this, Sim disclosed that two members of the Balon Dagupan Swimming Team also qualified for the 43rd South East Asian (SEA) Age Group Swimming Championships which will be held in Cambodia sometime this year.

“This is a really huge leap for swimming and for sports here in Dagupan, ” added Sim.

For now, the city’s star swimmers along with other athletes are gearing up for Palarong Pambansa which will be held in Davao City from April 27 to May 2. As back-to-back champions of the Region 1 Athletic Association (R1AA) Meet, the city will be sending more than 50 delegates to the competition. (Verdelle De Vera/CIO)