The new batch of Bb. Pilipinas winners were all impressive, but there were decisions in terms of placements I do not agree. For me, some girls should have earned higher placements than the others, although this batch of winners would definitely give a good fight in their respective international pageants.
Last night, I attended the Binibining Pilipinas 2018 finals. It was very exciting because more than half of the 40 candidates were qualified to make it to the Top 8. After seeing the girls up-close, it was so hard to predict who the winners would be, since most of them have beautiful faces that could be considered as dark horses.
Some past winners of the said pageant attended the event. I was able to meet some and had a small chit chat with them. Some of them had worn my creations in the past, and there were some who also wore my designs last night.
Among candidates, the crowd’s favorite with lots of fans was Catriona Gray. After what happened to her during the Miss World 2016 beauty pageant, wherein she gave the best answer but landed only in the Top 5, she had lots of sympathizers and eventually became her supporters. And they were there all the way which made her won many special awards, such as, the Best in National Costume, Jag Denim Queen, Miss Ever Bilena, Best in Swimsuit and Best in Long Gown.
Other candidates who won special awards were Michele Gumabao (Miss Cream Silk), Samantha Mae Bernardo ( Manila Bulletin Reader’s Choice), Marie Sherry Ann Tormes (Miss Friendship and Miss Talent) and Eva Psyche Patalinjug (Miss Photogenic).
From the 40 candidates, it was trimmed down to 25, and this time the girls competed in their swimsuits and evening gowns. And then, the Top 15 was announced, namely, Murielle Orais (3), Aya Abesamis (11), Juliana Kapeundi (15), Anjame Magbitang (21), Edjelyn Joy Gamboa (24), Wynonah Buot (26), Sandra Lemonon (35), Catriona Gray (20), Athisa Manalo (17), Jheza Huelar (31), Eva Patalinjug (32), Karen Gallman (38), Michele Gumabao (19), Vicky Rushton (1) and Samantha Bernardo (14).
The Top 15 portion was tough because it was the Question and Answer round. Each judge was to pick a name of the candidate whom he or she would ask the question. From the Top 15, the winners were determined. After the scores were made, the judges deliberated for about 20 minutes. And when they came back after the deliberation, the new queens were announced.
And the Binibining Pilipinas newly crowned queens:
- Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2018 – Catriona Gray
- Bb. Pilipinas-International 2018 – Athisa Manalo
- Bb. Pilipinas-Supranational 2018 – Jehza Huelar
- Bb. Pilipinas-Grand International 2018 – Eva Patalinjug
- Bb. Pilipinas-Intercontinental 2018 – Karen Gallman
- Bb. Pilipinas-Globe 2018 – Michele Gumabao
- Bb. Pilipinas 2018 1st runner-up – Vickie Rushton
- Bb. Pilipinas 2018 2nd runner-up – Samantha Mae Bernardo
At the end of the night, Catriona was not just the favorite but she also performed well, truly deserving of the crown. But there were other candidates who were also impressive last night, but a lot of times, luck placed a special role in determining the winner in every pageant.
One of the favorites was Sandra Lemonon who made well during the swimsuit and evening gown competitions. But she was quite unlucky in the interview portion, as she was asked about the Build! Build! Build! program of the government. She was honest enough to admit that she had no idea what the project was all about.
The past weeks prior to the coronation night, the candidates have been very busy with rehearsals and preparations to be able to find time to read current events. If it were something about two or three months before, she could have answered it well.
I think Michele Gumabao should have earned a higher position as she was one of the finalists who gave the best answers that night. It was actually between her and Catriona who had a neck to neck battle in the interview round. And I think if Lemonon decide to join Binibining Pilipinas next time, she will definitely be a strong contender, more prepared and more sympathizers from pageant fanatics.