Asian Games

‘Happy but hurting’: PH bet Patrick Coo bags BMX bronze

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‘Happy but hurting’: PH bet Patrick Coo bags BMX bronze 

WINNER'S CIRCLE. Philippine cyclist Patrick Coo (right) celebrates with former Asian Games champion Daniel Caluag after claiming a bronze.


‘I’m fast and everything, but I get so much adrenaline most of the time,’ says Patrick Coo after brushing off injury from an early crash before claiming a BMX bronze

MANILA, Philippines – Filipino cyclist Patrick Bren Coo brushed off an earlier injury to capture the bronze medal in BMX racing in the 19th Asian Games on Sunday, October 1, in Chun’an, China.

Coo, who scraped the upper part of his right thigh after crashing in the first moto, registered a time of 39.076 seconds to deliver Philippine cycling’s first medal in this edition.

Japan’s Asuma Nakai (37.542), the 23-year-old juniors bronze medalist in the UCI world championships last year, captured the gold, while Southeast Asian Games champion Komet Sukprasert of Thailand (38.478) secured the silver.

“I’m very happy but hurting for sure,” said the 21-year-old Coo. “I ripped my pants in the process and got it fixed immediately.”

The crash in the first moto wasn’t anything new for Coo, admitting he almost always does, but he’s been trying to correct his mistakes.

“I’m fast and everything, but I get so much adrenaline most of the time,” he said. “I need to take it step by step, by staying calm more on the bike.” 

Coo’s feat secured Philippine cycling a medal in each of the Asian Games’ last three editions as Danny Caluag won the country’s only gold medal in the 2014 Incheon Games and also got bronze four years later in Indonesia.

Caluag, 36, was in the thick of the race again this year but slipped to sixth place in the final as he continued to nurse a rib injury sustained in training in the US.

Coo flew in four days ago from Aigle, Switzerland, straight from his UCI World Cycling Center training camp. However, he had to spend a night in Hangzhou – some 150km from Chun’an where the cycling competitions are staged – because he was directed to the main Athletes Village instead of a bus to the cycling venue.

But all that didn’t matter, sharing he already called his parents in the US, dad Benjamin from Iloilo and mom Romilyn Lag from Cagayan de Oro, minutes after the race.

“They told me to pamper myself when I get back to the Philippines,” said Coo, who stays in Tagaytay City, which has the country’s only UCI BMX race track.

“I haven’t eaten rice for the past three months while I was in Switzerland, so time to gorge in Tagaytay,” he said, adding, “and a lot of isaw.”

Philippine Olympic Committee president and PhilCycling chief Abraham “Bambol” Tolentino said Coo, an Olympic Solidarity scholar, looks set for a winning future.

“This could kick off more major accomplishments for Patrick,” Tolentino said. “He’s only 21, so young, and he’s been training seriously and diligently the past year or so under the Olympic Solidarity program.” –

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