First Filipino Astronaut: La Salle grad Chino Roque wins Axe Apollo Astronaut competition, will fly into space in 2015

By: DiversityHuman in People

First Filipino Astronaut Chino Roque (La Salle) will fly into space in 2015

(UPDATED Dec. 07, 2013)The long wait is finally over. Chino Roque, from De La Salle University Manila, was chosen by AXE Apollo Astronaut Academy as one of the 23 lucky winners who will fly into space in 2015.

A total of 107 cadet finalists out of more than a million entries from 60 countries underwent rigorous training for the first AXE Apollo Astronaut Academy competition. Filipino astronaut hopefuls Evan Rey Datuin, Ramil Santos and Chino Roque competed against each other for a free trip to the edge of space and back.


Recruits underwent hero missions such as the assault course, a modified obstacle course only harder, to a high g-force training, a centrifuge machine that would reproduce the pressures the human body experience during space flight, and an air combat training and a final aptitude test.

After several weeks of training and intensive selection process, 23 winners were announced by AXE Apollo Astronaut Academy. Chino Roque, 22-year-old psychology graduate from La Salle, emerged as the first Filipino Astronaut.

Roque was replacement for Air Force pilot Lt. Mario Mendoza Jr., who dropped out of the space race due to conflicts in his schedule. Chino Roque was selected via electronic raffle. He is a crossfit coach and grew up joining various competitions. He is the youngest among the Filipino contenders. Roque underwent both air combat training and assault course.

In an interview, the proud pinoy said his edge lies in his "never-give-up type of attitude". Chino also gave an inspiring message to Filipinos.

"Of course, unang-una sa Diyos ito. Lahat naman ng mapanalo ko, matalo man, ang natutunan ko sa Diyos ko inaalay at siyempre sa pamilya ko--tatay ko, nanay ko, mga kapatid ko," Roque said.


AXE, makers of body spray and other personal hygiene products, teamed up with famed moonwalker Buzz Aldrin and launched an online contest early this year which aims to bring space travelers into space. that the winners will launch aboard a sub-orbital space vehicle built by the U.S. company XCOR Aerospace and operated by the tourism firm Space Expedition Curacao.

For the lucky 23 winners who showed they have what it takes to become an astronaut, Buzz Aldrin, the second man to land on the moon, gave a simple advice.

"Work friendly close with all your brothers and have a great time, see to it that you really have a good time," said Aldrin.

To Chino Roque, congratulations for being the first Filipino Astronaut! Please continue to bring honor and pride to our country. Show the world that Filipinos can be one of the best Astronauts! Good luck!

Reference: ABS-CBN news




Posted by on 06 Dec 2013

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