Surprises and upsets highlight Binibining Pilipinas 2008

The Binibining Pilipinas 2008 titleholders: (from left) Patricia Fernandez, Bb. Pilipinas-International; Janina San Miguel, Bb. Pilipinas-World; and Jennifer Barrientos, Bb. Pilipinas-Universe.

A lot of beauty pageant enthusiasts thought last night's Binibining Pilipinas 2008 coronation night had a lot of upsets and suprises. First on their list was what happened to Candidate No. 8, 18-year-old Danielle Kirsten Muriel CastaƱo.

Almost everyone in the Araneta Coliseum thought the pretty Quezon City teenager was sure to win any of the titles at stake. With an amazing number of special awards, plus her impressive performance during the question-and-answer portion, a lot of those who guessed her to be one of the titleholders were disappointed when she was announced as the 1st runner-up.

Danielle was asked, what was the hardest problem she had ever faced? She answered: the separation of her parents. Collecting herself after saying "overwhermed" instead of "overwhelmed"during her exchange with pageant host Paolo Bediones, she aced herQ&A afterwards, when she said the separation of her parents madeher the strong person that she is today.


Danielle won the following special awards: Ms. Bacchus Energy Drink, Ms. Photogenic, Ms. Natasha Poise and Grace, Ms. Philippine Airlines, and Ms. Ever Bilena.

Another audience favorite, Candidate No. 18 Elizabeth Jacqueline Nacuspag, was declared 2nd runner-up before Danielle's name was called. She was doing fine during her conversation with Paolo, but became emotional when she answered the question given to her by basketball star-TV host Chris Tiu, who was one of the judges.

THE TITLE HOLDERS. First to be given a crown was Candidate No. 2 Patricia Fernandez, who was named Bb. Pilipinas-International. Earlier, she won the special award, Ms. Natasha.

Asked during the question and answer portion, which person she admires the most, she answered "Mother Theresa." She was on her way to impressing the judges with her answer until she made a blooper by saying "I believe all of us should do her." She quickly corrected herself afterwards.

The 22-year-old speech communication graduate from the University of the Philippines reportedly fainted backstage before the announcement of the winners. She was quickly attended to and recovered in time for the announcement.


Next to be crowned was Candidate No. 7 Jennifer Barrientos from San Mateo, Rizal, as Bb. Pilipinas-Universe. Her answer to the question, "Who are the people she talks to when she has a problem," drew cheers and applause from the audience. The tourism grad from the University of Sto. Tomas said she trusts her parents with her problems and talks to them first instead of her friends.

Least expected to win a crown after her disastrous question-and-answer moment was Candidate No. 15, 17-year-old Janina San Miguel, as Bb. Pilipinas-World. The Miss University of the East first runner-up buckled, messed up, and gave in to the pressure of the Q&A portion, eliciting boos and heckling from the audience.

She continuously said sorry to everyone for being a "pageant first timer" until she finally made it out of the difficult situation she was in by answering in Tagalog. Janina won Best In Swimsuit and Best In Long Gown earlier.


OTHER WINNERS. Other candidates who won last night were Rizza Liz Catigan (No. 24), Ms. Talent; Evangeline May Castillo (No. 6), Ms. Friendship; and Roxanne Tadique (No. 20), Manila Bulletin Readers' Choice Award.

The other five finalists who made it to the Top 10 were Jaysel Arrozal (No. 12), Kathleen Phyllis Guerrero (No. 9), Karen Golar No. 14), Toni Alyessa Hipolito (No. 3), and Tabetha Jo Frick No. 13).

The Top 10 finalists and winners were selected by the judges with Quezon City Mayor Sonny Belmonte as chairman. Other members of the panel of judges were U.S. Ambassador Kristie A. Kenney, Japanese Ambassador Makoto Katsura, Philippine Ambassador to Spain Joseph D. Bernardo, United Breweries Group and Kingfisher Airlines Chairman Dr. Vijay Mallya, Chateau Petrus's Jean Moueix, Entrepreneurs School of Asia founder Ms. Vivienne Tan, Sofitel Philippine Plaza President Oscar Salvacion, Marimar's Marian Rivera, actor Dennis Trillo, and Chris Tiu.

Bb. Pilipinas Universe 1994 and actress-TV host Charlene Gonzalez, who effectively worked up the crowd even during commercials breaks, shared the stage with Paolo Bediones as co-host. Kapamilya star and Miss International 2005 Precious Lara Quigaman worked with Kapuso people once again as anchor for the show.


The Whiplash Dancers, Alfred Vargas, Marco Alcaraz, Paolo Paraiso, Aljur Abrenica, and The Angelos were the guest performers last night.


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