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Oconer eyes 1st Ronda title

By Jerome Lagunzad

National team standout George Oconer is back in the hunt as he guns for a breakthrough victory in the 2018 Ronda Pilipinas presented by LBC which hits the road starting on March 3 in Vigan City, Ilocos Sur.

After skipping last year’s edition to keep his full focus on the national team’s bid in the Southeast Asian Games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Oconer, 26, is aching to make a good account of himself as he leads developmental team Go for Gold’s title chase this time.

“I’m happy to be competing again in Ronda and I’m focused on winning it this year,” said Oconer, who settled as bridesmaid to grizzled Santy Barnachea in the 2015 edition of the country’s biggest race which offers R1million to the eventual winner.

Oconer is hoping he can finally go over the hump this time and join an elite circle of former winners Jan Paul Morales (2015, 2016), Barnachea (2011, 2015), Irish Valenzuela of CCN Superteam (2012), Mark Galedo (2013) and Reimon Lapaza (2014).