Sprinter Michael del Prado crosses paths with his father, track legend Isidro del Prado, in the athletics meet of the 30th Southeast Asian Games when it begins on Friday.
The 24-year old del Prado and teammate Joymee Sequita will race in the men’s 400-meter run opposite the Brunei national squad which has been coached since 2009 by the elder del Prado.
It will be friendly rivalry between the two sides, since the young del Prado had trained with his dad in Brunei for the last eight months.
“Nag-train ako with my dad for eight months in Brunei. He is the head coach. He is coming here with the Brunei team.
While training under the guidance of his father, del Prado was able to improve his personal best from 48 seconds to 47.49 seconds, while seeing action in the Philippine Athletics Track and Field Association Weekly Relays last September.
Del Prado said this is a significant improvement after he hit 47.98 seconds in the Vietnam Open a month before.
The elder del Prado once held the 200m record which was broken in 2007 by Ralph Waldy Soguilon.
Since 2009, del Prado has been part of the coaching staff of the Brunei national athletics team.
He became known for helping Ak Hafiy Tajuddin Rositi break his own record at the men’s 400-meter event at the 2012 Summer Olympics.
Two years ago, Brunei went home empty handed in athletics, despite having sent five athletes.
Officials of the PATAFA have a projected gold-silver-bronze medal haul of 6-10-8 in the trackfest, and this gold medal prediction could even go as high as 12.
So far, Fil American Trenten Beram won’t be back to seek the gold last won in 2017.
Thai sprinter Phitchaya Sunthonthuam, who got the silver the last time around will fight for the gold.
Sunthonthuam, who had a 46.46 second performance two years ago, clocked 47.34 seconds during the test event in New Clark City, and had a time 47.15 seconds during the Asian Championships in Doha, Qatar.
Sequita, who has personal best of 47.41 seconds, is also among the contenders for a podium finish.