Amidst the intermittent rain, the participants of this year's series all flocked to the Carmona Racing Circuit for the opening round of the Jazz Vtec Media Challenge. On hand to welcome media personalities were HCPI president Takashi Sekiguchi, and Race Director Pocholo Ramirez. After the Clerk of the Course's briefing, the racers proceeded to walk the 1.2 kilometer track, trying visualize the racing line they were going to traverse during the day.
Two-time Media Challenge champs Manila Bulletin topped the podium finishers with a team time of 03:26.73 followed by C! Magazine [03:27.36] and Philippine Star / Speed Magazine [03:28.86]. Missing the podium by mere seconds were Top Gear Magazine [03:30.27] and Manila Times / DZRH [03:32.05] in fourth and fifth places, respectively.
Milliseconds separated the top five best times of the day with Media Challenge Rookie Charles Kim of Top Gear Magazine clocking the fastest time of 01:08.03 , followed by MC veteran and Manila Bulletin Senior Reporter Aris Ilagan [01:08.06] and C! Magazine's James Deakin [01:08.78] completing the podium finishers. Fourth best time was run by C! Magazine's Iņigo Roces [01:08.87] and while fifth place was a tie between veterans Anjo Perez of Manila Bulletin and Lester Dizon of Philippine Star [01:08.96].
Despite the unfavorable weather conditions, the four official Jazz Vtec cars were pushed to the limits. After more than 150 rounds around the track by the media speedsters, Petron Xtra Unleaded Gasoline proved true to its tag line of "Power for Xtra miles," by consuming only 1/4 tank of fuel, per car, throughout the race day. The Goodyear Eagle NCT 5 tires, which are the original equipment tires of the Honda Jazz Vtec, provided superior handling and braking in both wet and dry conditions.
Ten media teams and two sponsor teams compose this year's lineup. Team ABS-CBN: Cito Beltran, Gene Orejana, Ira Panganiban & Ronnie Trinidad; Team AUTO REVIEW / AUTOINDUSTRIYA.COM: Ronald de los Reyes, Kit Joaquin, Brent Co & Jude Morte; Team BUSINESS WORLD / AUTO EXTREME: Arnold Belleza, Marvin Tort, Ferdie de la Cruz, & Joey Lopez; Team C! MAGAZINE: James Deakin, AG Puyat, Iņigo Roces & Chris Van Hoven; Team PDI / DAILY TRIBUNE / DZEC / BANDERA: Ferdi Baja, Bam Olivares, Tessa Salazar & Andy Sevilla; Team MANILA BULLETIN: Anjo Perez, Popong Andolong, Aris Ilagan & Aaron Favila; Team MANILA STANDARD TODAY / DZMM: Dino Directo, Mon Tomeldan, Angelo Almonte & Ricky Velasco; Team MANILA TIMES / DZRH: Brian Afuang, Vernon Sarne, Jess Garcia & Deo Macalma; Team PHILIPPINE STAR / SPEED MAGAZINE: Lester Dizon, Jeff Reyes, Manny de los Reyes & Andy Leuterio; Team TOP GEAR MAGAZINE: Mike Black, Charles Kim, Susan Leonardo & Ferman Lao
The 7th season of the Media Challenge is presented by Honda Cars Philippines, Inc and brought to you by Petron Xtra Unleaded, Goodyear for the OEM tires, Nodalo's Trading for the race-safety modifications, Igertech for the timing and Aitech for the car stickers.
This club event is sanctioned by the Automobile Association Philippines and is organized by ADBM Resources.
The second round of the Jazz Vtec Media Challenge is slated to run on October 29, 2005 at the Carmona Racing Circuit.