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Miss Universe Philippines 2024 preliminaries: frontrunners, favorites

MANILA, Philippines — In 36 hours or so, a new Miss Universe Philippines (MUPH) will be crowned. She will be the country's representative to the forthcoming pageant edition in Mexico. But the question is: Who among this year's 53 aspirants will wear the crown?

The fifth edition of Miss Universe Philippines has been touted as a "bloodbath" as a huge number of qualified entrants are fighting for just a single title (not including the four other titles that will be handed out after the coronation).

Before the coronation night on Wednesday, let's take a look at the frontrunners and favorites that the pageant community has set its eyes on.

Frontrunners

  • Ma. Ahtisa Manalo (Quezon Province) – She won the Binibining Pilipinas International crown in 2018 and was proclaimed 1st runner-up winner to the Miss International 2018 title. Ahtisa has been in the wish list for most pageant enthusiasts since 2022.
  • Christi Lynn McGarry (Taguig) – After her foray with the Mutya ng Pilipinas, she joined and won the Binibining Pilipinas InterContinental in 2015. She was also proclaimed 1st runner-up to the Miss InterContinental crown in 2015. Three years after, the Philippines won its first Miss InterContinental victory.
  • Kris Tiffany Janson (Cebu) – Like Christi, she won the Binibining Pilipinas InterContinental title the year prior. And was named 2nd runner-up to the Miss InterContinental 2014 title. Because of their ages, she and Christi can only compete for the Universe title; having aged out from the other pageant platforms of the four other crowns.
  • Stacey Gabriel (Cainta) – After a short stint in showbusiness, this De La Salle graduate joined the Binibining Pilipinas 2022 pageant and was named 2nd runner-up that year. She says what she may lack in height, she compensates with a lot of heart.
  • Victoria Velasquez Vincent (Bacoor) – This Kiwi-Pinay was crowned Miss Universe Philippines – Tourism in 2021. Pageant observers say that she's back with a vengeance!
  • Cyrille Payumo (Pampanga) – After winning as Mutya ng Pilipinas Tourism 2019, this statuesque Pampangeña was crowned Miss Tourism International 2019. After a stint with the Binibining Pilipinas 2023, she's bringing her A-game to the MUPH stage.
  • Alexandra Mae Rosales (Laguna) – After joining the Binibining Pilipinas pageant, she was crowned Miss Supermodel Worldwide in 2022. Pageant aficionados think she still has unfinished business left that needs closure.

Favorites

  • Alexie Mae Brooks (Iloilo) – After winning the local title, there was no stopping her. Winning the hearts of her supporters, she has also won a number of the pageant's challenges.
  • Anita Rose Gomez (Zambales) – After a stint with Miss Philippines Earth, this lady with a whistle-bait figure has been wowing audiences, especially during the preliminaries. Will she follow in the footsteps of her predecessor?
  • Raven Hate Doctor (Palawan) – After a strong performance at the Acqua Boracay swimwear preliminaries, she has suddenly become part of the prediction charts.
  • Tara Mae Valencia (Baguio) – This sweet-faced lady has also performed well in all the pre-pageant challenges. Will she also win like her predecessor?
  • Selena Antonio Reyes (Pasig) – This mom of two is the oldest candidate in her batch, and the only married woman competing for the title. Will her pageant experiences be an edge over her co-candidates?
  • Kayla Rabaya Carter (Northern California) – She's the first of the other overseas communities representatives who has caught the eyes of the pageant community because of her beautiful countenance. Will that give her an advantage come finals night?

Others

Needless to say, there are the dark horses like Mary Josephine Paaske of Talisay City, Chelsea Manalo of Bulacan, or Kymberlee Street of Australia; to name a few. These aspirants were simply under the radar throughout the pre-pageant season and may simply come out of nowhere and shine come finals night. Much like what Raquel Pelletier of Haiti did during the Miss Universe 2016 pageant held here in Manila.

So whether the 53 hopefuls fall under the frontrunner, favorite, or dark horse category, we wish all of them the best in their Miss Universe Philippines odyssey!

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Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com

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