Featured Stories
Discover heart-warming tales and anecdotes from the beating heart of the airline.




TeamPAL continuously promotes the group to employees to take up the sport. Seen in the photo is FO Maya Segovia (TeamPAL head), RA from Commercial Strategy, Lilibeth Tan-Ng (AVP Pilot Affairs,) Captain Marc Castro and Jeffrey Gutilban of Logistics.



The Beginning

One day in 2012, a group of like-minded pilots and cabin crew decided to form a triathlon team that would compete in significant sporting events around the country. By definition, a triathlete participates in three types of sports: swimming, biking, and running.



TeamPAL first competed as a group in the 2012 Cobra Ironman 70.3 in Cebu.



What began as a small band of triathlete-crew members evolved into a larger group. 

One of the pioneers, Capt. Mike Ugalino said, “We would meet at race events and do some training together. This was the time that running races was starting to grow.”


Two triathlon relay teams were formed to compete in the 2012 Cobra Ironman 70.3 in Cebu. The team comprised Second Officer Kat Pijuan (swimming), Capt. Monjo Balinghasay (biking), and Capt. Mike Ugalino (running). The other team members were First Officer Moy Pabalan (swimming), Flight Steward George Carag (biking), and Flight Steward Chris Casella (running). 





The team takes the opportunity to compete in international events such as the Doha Marathon. Seen here are Capt. Mike Ugalino and SO Jun Yee.



Fast forward to 2016, with more PALers getting hooked on the sport, the team was reorganized with the addition of new leaders, FO Maya Segovia and Capt. Mark Tan. They received the support of Ms. Lilybeth Tan-Ng, AVP-Pilot Affairs, and Cheq Navarro of the Human Capital Department.


Team PAL

The team coined the name TeamPAL for a more modern feel, replacing “PAL Triathlon Team” so as not to alienate those who were not yet into the three specific triathlon sports of swimming, running, and biking.




The team makes a victory pose at the Aguila Iron Man 70.3 Subic held on August 11, 2019.



TeamPAL was meant to be a group of health-conscious PALers who are into sports. The team joined the Tri-United Sprint Triathlon event in 2016 and topped the group competition. TeamPAL has grown steadily in numbers since then.


The team acknowledges the support they receive from the company. Capt. Marc Castro said, “Fortunately, we have great support from PAL.”


Overcoming Challenges

The challenges are part of the sport. FO Maya Segovia shares, "One of the major difficulties as pilots training for the triathlon is time management.


"We don't follow a set schedule, have weekends, or enjoy holidays. Without a sound training regimen, it's challenging to increase stamina and develop new skills”. She further adds, "Some of the most important factors in performance improvement are repetition and consistency."



Crossing the finish line gives that sense of fulfillment as seen on the face of FO Vince Alcanzare after all the hard work at the Ironman Kona World Championship back in 2022.



"Pilots are known to be very disciplined. We do what needs to be done," said Capt. Ugalino. The team members balance work and find time to recover by having adequate rest pre- and post-workout, to allow them to still do their jobs well.


The combination of the sport and working for PAL has its perks. SO Martin Carandang shares, "Part of my motivation comes from the privilege of being able to visit different destinations and do my training there. PAL's destinations are really beautiful, and we get to go to many of those."


Many in the team have built a solid foundation and bond, encouraging aspiring PALers to take the sport. SO Rey Yee says, “Taking up triathlon is highly recommended not only due to its medical benefits but also the camaraderie the team is building up with one another. In addition, representing our flag, the Philippines, and Philippine Airlines gives us more reason to pursue the sport.


Since its inception in 2012, the team has competed in both local and international competitions, such as the Cobra Ironman 70.3 in Cebu, Aguila Iron Man 70.3 in Subic, and the Ironman World Championship in Hawaii, to name some.


Currently, TeamPAL has 105 members -- all PALers who live and breathe the sport.