Here are the results of the 2018 Subaru Palm Challenge: Philippine Face Off

<L-R> Uzzi Asuncion, MIP Marketing Manager; Mark Albert Guballa; John Kris Ilagan; Juntie Flores; Filmark Bernante; Karl Joseph Sarenas; Rey Balintucas; Angel Lou Grospe; Alec Karol Ebuen; Carlo Talahib; Daniel Sabas; Joey Picadizo, MIP National Sales Manager; Gerry Hernandez, MIP General Manager

Motor Image Pilipinas, Inc., held the 2018 Subaru Palm Challenge: Philippine Face-Off last September 22 at 9th Avenue, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig City. Ten finalists have emerged victorious out of almost one hundred aspirants and are now set to represent the Philippines in the Regional Finals in Singapore next month.

The challenge started at 9 AM for this test of will and endurance. The challenge, to keep their hands on one of the four Subaru XVs with EyeSight, with no protection against the elements, the heat of the sun, or the discomfort of rain.

After more than nine exhausting hours, the top 10 contestants were revealed. The ultimate Filipino winner and the Philppine’s LAST MAN STANDING, a contest newbie, Rey Balintucas.

This 2018’s challenge also brought about some interesting twists. Juan Furiscal and Jaspher Galaura, both part of last year’s top ten, fell early in the competition. Rheden Pinoliad, last year’s runner up and Alex Neblasca, 2016 Regional Palm Challenge strongman also didn’t make it past through the local leg.

Veterans Carlo Talahib, who was also last year’s PH team captain, and Filmark Bernante, last year’s Regional Palm Challenge country winner, rejoins the 2018 team, but it was Rey Balintucas and Juntie Flores, last year’s PH winner, who held on longest. Eventually, Flores’ bid for back to back wins was spoiled by Balintucas, who outlasted Flores by merely 3 seconds.

The top 10 finalists are:




1st Rey Balintucas 09:30:24
2nd Juntie Flores 09:27:29
3rd Filmark Bernante 09:26:15
4th Carlo Talahib 09:26:06
5th John Kris Ilagan 09:25:39
6th Alec Karol Ebuen 09:23:07
7th Mark Albert Guballa 09:22:06
8th Daniel Sabas 09:21:40
9th Karl Joseph Sarenas 09:21:21
10th Angel Lou Grospe 09:21:01

*Pending required documents to participate in SG Finals

The Philippine team is now complete and set to compete against other Asian countries in an even more difficult arena from October 26 to 31, 2018 in Singapore. Over the past years, the closest podium finish the Philippines reached was third place in 2016. Could a Filipino finally claim the crown at last and drive home his very own Subaru? Let’s all show our support to Subaru Team Philippines this October!


Words and Photos by Motor Image Pilipinas