Pocholo Ramirez, 76

Philippine motorsports legend Pocholo Ramirez passed away Wednesday morning after years of battling bladder cancer. He was 76.

He is survived by his wife, Ellen, and children Kookie, Georges, Louie, Michelle and Miguel.

Ramirez took on racing as a hobby in the early 1960s. He got into circuit and rally races in 1966 and was named Driver of the Year by the Philippine Motor Sports Club for two consecutive years.

His racing career continued to shine in the 1970s by winning races like the Dodjie Laurel Memorial Race of Manila Grand Prix and the Greenhills Grand Prix.

He won three more Driver of the Year awards, this time coming from the Automobile Racing Association of the Philippines.

A racing-related accident in 1977 prompted late President Ferdinand Marcos to stop racing competitions in the Philippines. In the years that followed, Ramirez went off to various races abroad.

It was at the Macau Grand Prix where he reportedly ran his fastest speed of 280kph.

In more recent history, Ramirez became an icon of fuel efficiency after posting a record of running 1,114 kilometers with just one full tank at the Petron Xtra Miles Challenge in 2005.

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