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June Macasaet wins 1st ‘Manhunt International’ tilt for the Philippines

Filipino Model June Macasaet was crowned Manhunt International 2012 leading the pack of five gorgeous male pageant winners during the final night held in Bangkok, Thailand Friday, November 9.

The 6-foot-1-inch tall hunk from Batangas is the first Filipino to win the Manhunt International title. He bested 54 gorgeous men from across the globe including Misters Sweden, Macau, Puerto Rico and Singapore who emerged as runners-up.

Macasaet, a 27-year-old BS Marketing graduate of Centro Escolar University-Manila who also won the New Urban Male Ambassador title ended the country’s drought in this longest-running international male pageant. The Philippines got the previous highest placement in the pageant in 1997 when model Vincent Pinto won second runner-up and Mister Talent, four years after the successful winning of Aaron Small as third runner-up during the launch of the male pageant in 1993.

Handsome, charming, oozing with sex appeal and with a physique to die for, Macasaet got the ticket to represent the country in the competition when he was crowned Manhunt International – Philippines on October 19 where he also won the Urban Male Special Award.

Early favorite Mister Sweden Peter Bo Jonsson won First Runner-Up  while the surprise winner, Macau’s Martin Wang won Second Runner-up and Mister Physique. Another early favorite Mister Puerto Rico Jimmy Perez Rivera won Third Runner-Up and Best Face Awards, and the most favorite to win the title, Singapore’s Jason Chee emerged Fourth Runner-Up and won the Mister Internet Popularity award.

Manhunt International 2012 winner June Macasaet of the Philippines with (left to right) Mister Singapore (Fourth Runner-Up), Macau (Second Runner-up),
Philippines, Sweden (First Runner-up) and Puerto Rico (Third Runner-up).

Top 15 finalists are Columbia’s Jorge Perez, Latvia’s Ivans Jevstignejevs, Greece’ Thomas Gabriel, Switzerland’s Lavdrim Sylejmani, India’s Arry Dabas, USA’s Andres Giraldo, Venezuela’s Jeyco Estaba, Dominican Republic’s Joel Perez, Thailand’s Mookkapon Posakabuth, and Denmark’s Alexander Bach.

A handful of hunks also won various Special Awards. Mister Photogenic is India’s Arry Dabas, Mr Personality is one of the early favorites, Mister Bahamas Drew Palacious, Mister Friendship is Denmark’s Alexander Bach, and the Best Runway model is Latvia’s Ivans Jevstignejevs. Mister Hong Kong Guo Chuang Tao won Best in National Costume with Mister Vietnam Nguyễn Quang Huân and Mister Venezuela Jeyco Estaba as first and second runners-up, respectively.

Started as a local male contest in Singapore in 1987 by Alex Liu, Manhunt International has become an international pageant in 1993 as the first contest was held in Gold Coast, Australia. Philippines hosted the 1999 edition of the pageant in Manila.

Aside from Aaron Small (3rd runner up, 1993) and Vincent Pinto (2nd runner-up and Mr. Talent, 1997) other previous Philippine delegates to Manhunt include Bernie Vedasco Guindo (1994), Roy de Guzman (1995), , Michael Sol Cruz (1998), Alexander Judilla (Best National Costume, 1999), Richard Stuart (Mr. Talent, 2000), Rick Cayzer (Mr. Personality, 2001), Bruce Quebral (2002), Brent Javier (Mr. Internet Popularity, 2005), Iago Lagapa Raterta (semi-finalist, 2006), Roldunne Jimenez Mendoza (Runway Model runner-up, 2007), Marvin Wijangco (semi-finalist and Mr. Personality, 2008), Carlo Morris Galang (2010), and Ron Marvin Miranda (semi-finalist, 2011).

Manhunt International 2012 Winner, Philippines’ June Macasaet in his trunks.

Manhunt International 2012 Winner June Macasaet is a ramp model before he joined the competition.

Manhunt International 2012 Winner June Macasaet is a ramp model before he joined the competition.

Personal note: This seems to be a good year for the Philippines in terms of beauty pageants. Just earlier a few days ago, Filipino trangender Kevin Balot was crowned Miss Queen International 2012. I’m hoping we could win other major pageants especially Miss Universe 2012 with Janine Marie Tugonon. By the way, our contestant for Mister World 2012 is none other than the hunk model, Andrew James Wolf.

Trivia: June Mendoza Macasaet is a grandnephew of the Philippine Press Institute Chairman of the Board, Business Insight Malaya publisher Amado P. Macasaet.

A full-time ramp model in the Philippines, Macasaet was the first runner-up in the Century Tuna Superbods 2012 competition.

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Ely Valendez

Ely Valendez is an award-winning blogger-journalist based in the Philippines. He handles several social media marketing projects for various brands in his home country as well as for a US-based IT/e-commerce company, PCM where he works full time. He uses his spare time doing financial consultancy for a UK-based company. He also sits as member of the Board of Directors of the Philippines Communication Society and serves as a web manager and resource person of the Philippine Press Institute.

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