Enduring a leg injury he suffered from a crash in a qualifying race, Rhowell Matias “Bornok” Mangosong IV of Team UA Mindanao still managed to dominate the fourth leg of the Diamond Motors Supercross Series held at the MX Messiah Fairgrounds in Taytay, Rizal on Saturday.
The 25-year-old Mangosong finished the 20-lap race first in 17 minutes and 35.910 seconds to tie main rival Glenn Aguilar who won the first and second legs of the series. Aguilar failed to join the 3rd and 4th legs for some reasons.
As soon as the green flag was raised, Mangosong garnered his speed, leaving behind co-competitors in the PTT Pro Open Production such as JC Rellosa, Jerick Mitra, Buboy Antonio, and Terrence Napat to complete the top five finishers.
In the last few laps of the race, Rellosa almost took over the Davaoeño rider. Mindful of maintaining the lead he acquired from the previous races, Mangosong quickly adjusted his tactic to slow down the momentum of Rellosa.
“Alam ko naman na malinis maglaro si JC. Talagang fair siya maglaro kaya hindi naman ako napressured. Ang ginawa ko lang nasa survival mode lang ako,” said Mangosong.
“When he went for an overtake, I made sure na nasa outside lines siya para pagdating sa corner may advantage ako. Kasi 'yung outside lines pwede mo i-block galing sa inside. ‘Yun ang ginawa ko.”
Not only did he suffer an injury, Mangosong also experienced technical problems with his ride. Completing the 20-lap race without a sturdy motor grip, Mangosong shared why he threw the grip in the stretch, making light of the dangerous situation.
“Bago magstart 'yung race, naghugas kami ng motor. Eh napasukan pala ng tubig 'yung grip kaya madulas na 'yung loob. 'Yung feeling na umiikot na siya, hindi na siya kumakapit. Kaya kung napanood mo, talagang tinanggal ko na lang bigla,” he said, thinking that throwing the grip off will help him go further in the race but it turned out quite the contrary as it was also soaked with water inside.
“Sabi ko talaga sa sarili ko, 'kumapit ka nang mabuti dyan kung hindi patay ka mamaya.' Eh buhay pa naman ako ngayon,” Mangosong jokingly said, adding that it was because of luck and prayers that he survived the action-packed race.
Mangosong is well aware that the race had just become more intense and exciting.
"It's not over until it's over. I'll hope for the best, train, and prepare. Hangga't hindi pa iniaangat 'yung checkered flag, hindi pa tapos ang laban," he ended.
The overall champion in the five-leg series will receive a cash prize of P50,000. The fifth and last race is slated to happen on May 27.
The said racing event was made possible by Diamond Motor Corporation, Generation Congregation, Dunlop Tires, Tireshakk, Yamaha Motor Philippines, GoPro Philippines, PTT Philippines Corp., Shell Philippines, DC Philippines, Fox Head Philippines, Coffee Grounds Taytay, and Xtreme Adrenaline Sports Entertainment.