Ralph Gelo Villaro showed a glimpse of his wakeskating prowess for the coming 2019 Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games) after bagging the silver medal in the International WakeSki and Wakeboard Federation Series in Singapore recently.
The 18-year-old Villaro, who will be representing the Philippines in the coming SEA Games, placed runner-up to Israel’s Dan Milstein, while beating Md. Fadzli Zulkifli—an impressive feat altogether considering it was his first-ever international competition.
Villaro plunged into action in the Singapore stop of the series as a means to improve his craft for the biennial SEAG meet, which the Philippines is hosting on Nov. 30 to Dec. 10 later this year.
He ended up turning a lot of heads with his silver that glittered like gold.
“All throughout the challenge, I was there to contend and I simply put forth a valiant effort,” said Villaro. “My first international competition helped me a lot as it gave me the experience I need to help me get ready for this coming SEA Games.”
“Thank you to Homies Approved, which is my support and to Deca Wake Park. To all who supported me on my first global competition, this is to you all,” he continued.
Villaro’s last local competition was in February at the 2019 Philippine Cable Nationals, where he qualified for this coming SEA Games.
“Before I joined this international competition, I just joined the nationals. I joined just to get into the group. From that point, I took in a ton (of learning) through practice,” Villaro said. “And after that, I made it to the Team Philippines.”
Living just five minutes away from the Deca Wakepark in Clark proved to be a key to his wakeskating dream as it allowed him to train everyday. He started with the sport at 14 years old in 2015. He won his first gold medal a year later in Camarines Sur. It also helped that he is now a store manager of the wake park—a perfect situation for this Pampanga native, who initially saw the sport as a mere leisure activity.
“I saw them [professionals], they are generally excellent at it. Right then and there they’ve turned into my inspiration,” Villaro said. “Now, I’m really practicing to have a proper diet and get a more improved, proper training. I train everyday. I work for the wakeboard park also as a store manager and those are the two things I do everyday.”
Villaro’s goal is to make the Philippines no. 1 in the sport of wakeskating.
Late this year, he gets to start fulfilling that dream.
“I really want to win this SEA Games, so I’m giving it my all to be able to make it to the top. As of the moment, I just want to focus on practicing,” Villaro said.
Quotes from Palaro News
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