KIX, the ultimate TV destination for action entertainment delivered heart-stopping live action in the final showdown of R U Tough Enough? (RUTE). This was a nationwide search for the toughest Pinoy in a competition that looks for ten extremely tough people to contend in a series of challenges that defy the boundaries of physical, mental and emotional toughness. The battle was held at The Block Atrium of SM North EDSA. With hundreds of entries this year, 6 male and 4 female finalists were chosen to fight for the title of the Toughest Pinoy and the grand prize of PHP 250,000.
Each finalist had to go through the hard course one by one. Speed was important but ultimately strength, precision, focus, perseverance and agility were all factors that determined the final score. The top 2 highest scorers moved on to the second round where they had to compete against each other in 4 specially prepared head to head challenges.
It was close fight between all finalists but the top 2 that emerged was police officer Jester Calis versus physician and coach, Ian Banzon. Winning the title and the prize money by just 19.43 seconds was Jester Calis.
Jester grew up in the Cordillera mountains, working in the farm even as a child. He pursued an education in the hopes that he can one day help his parents financially. He finally left his Igorot people to attend to a bigger calling, the cause to serve the nation as a police officer.
Asked why he joined the competition, he answered, “I joined R U Tough Enough to help preserve the image of the PNP (Philippine National Police). I joined R U Tough Enough to show how tough a policeman can be.”
Before the finals, Jester’s mother suffered a stroke and needed to be hospitalized. But rather than let her son stay with her, she encouraged him to continue his training for the competition. “I went home immediately after (the finals) and gladly my mom is fine. She is proud of me,” shared Jester.
Asked what he will do with his prize money, he replied, “I will use the PHP 250,000 to support my family and my sister’s education.”
This year’s KIX RUTE ambassador is also a police officer himself, Mr. International 2014, Neil Perez.
R U Tough Enough? Philippines is sponsored by Fisherman’s Friend, G-Shock and Fern-C, supported by venue partner SM City North EDSA, gym partner Gold’s Gym, supporting partners Columbia Sportswear and Mountain Hardwear, as well as cable partners Cablelink, Cignal TV, Destiny Cable, Gsat and SKYcable; and media partners INQUIRER.NET, Philstar.com, Action Asia and Global News Network.
KIX is available on Cablelink Ch.54, Cignal TV Ch. 133, Destiny Cable Ch.63, Gsat Ch. 18 and SKYcable Ch.63.