BMX racer Patrick Coo will try to book an Olympic ticket this year as he competes at the UCI BMX World Cup 2021 —a Tokyo Olympic Qualification tournament in Bogota, Colombia on May 29 and 30.
“I am proud to be racing for the Philippines. It has been a dream,” said the 19-year-old Coo.
Born and raised in Bellflower, California, Coo started racing at the age of 6. He will try to clinch a berth to the Olympics and follow in the footsteps of Daniel Caluag, who represented the Philippines in the 2012 London games.
“Danny has always been a great man and inspiration to me. He is my biggest motivation. After watching him in the 2012 Olympics, it was something that I also wanted to do—put our country on the map,” said Coo. “He (Caluag) always told me to ride for fun and raise my heart out and that’s all that matters.”
In 2019, Coo won the title in the Asian Juniors BMX Championship in Malaysia and became part of the Philippine Cycling team last year.
“We have a lot of talented Filipino cyclists and one of them is our teenage BMX cyclist Patrick Coo. We are counting on him,” said PSC chairman William ‘Butch’ Ramirez.
The PSC gave almost P1.2 million in financial assistance for Coo’s campaign in Colombia.
The sports governing body also approved an additional funding of P321,298, which covers the airfare, accommodation, allowance, visa fee, insurance, COVID swab test, and entry fee of Coo’s entourage along with national coaches Ednalyn Hualda and Frederick Farr.
“Patrick has a lot of potential, not only for this year but in the next Olympic cycle in Paris, France,” added Ramirez.
Coo maybe the youngest in the Philippine team to aspire to become an Olympian, but he knows that this is what he really wanted ever since he started in the sport—to raise the flag and make the country proud.
“Dreams don’t work unless you work for it. We’re chasing the dream right now and the dream is the goal. I’ll do my best and hopefully, I’ll make it to qualify in Tokyo Olympics,” said Coo.