PUERTO RICO’s Stephanie Del Valle was crowned Miss World 2016 just a moment ago tonight December 18 at the MGM National Harbor, Oxon Hill, Maryland in the US (Monday morning, December 19 in the Philippines). It was the second crown for Puerto Rico.

Miss Philippines Catriona Gray was among the five finalists but failed to win the second crown for the Philippines. The two runners-up are Yaritza Reyes of the Dominican Republic and Natasha Mannuela of Indonesia. Miss Kenya Evelyn Njambi is also part of the Top 5 finalists.

If you were to ask me, Miss World 2016 is one of the biggest pageant blunders in history. At least I believe.

Considering the answers of the contestants and with early placements of Catriona, she was definitely the clear winner until Julia Morley announced it was Puerto Rico.

Answering the final question given by Miss World 2015 Mireia Lalaguna of Spain, “Which qualities do you think would it take to wear my crown?,” the Filipina beauty queen said, “I think, first of all, it takes bravery. To be a Miss World is to carry a burning torch. It is like action carried out by one to illuminate the lights of many. And I would dedicate my whole self, my love for the arts, and my voice to try to uplift, empower, and educate people. And it would be my greatest honor and duty to hold this torch high enough so all the world could feel and see its light. Thank you!”

That answer was the winning answer. Period.

Catriona Gray of the Philippines
Catriona Gray of the Philippines answering the final question at Miss World 2016 pageant held in the US.

The Pageant Highlights

Well, the 66th edition of the Miss World pageant started three hours earlier (at 5am Philippine Time) than its local broadcast on GMA-7 at 8am. It airs live worldwide through E! and online live streams. While everyone is asleep, millions of people around the world are definitely keeping their eyes on the finals.

In the Philippines, Filipinos woke up earlier than usual while some did not sleep at all. Everyone was cheering for the Filipina beauty queen who has already guaranteed a spot in the Top 20 by winning the Multi Media Award earlier in the competition. Besides, the first Filipina Miss World, Megan Young, who won in 2013 is one of the final event’s host.

Miss World 2013 Megan Young
Miss World 2013 Megan Young hosts Miss World 2016 pageant in the US.

Aside from Catriona, other guaranteed quarter-finalists are fast track winners China PR (Top Model), Cook Islands (Sports), Mongolia (Talent), and Indonesia (Beauty with a Purpose). The 15 other ladies composing the Top 20 quarter-finalists were chosen by the judges and they are representatives from France, Kenya, USA, India, Slovakia, Belgium, Puerto Rico, Australia, Thailand, Brazil, Ghana, Japan, Dominican Republic, Hungary, and Korea.

The quarter-final winners proved that Miss World becomes an unpredictable pageant despite the fact that it chooses the Top 20 based on their overall performance on the fast track events, which gives the audience a chance to predict the possible winners. Yet, it remained unpredictable. Ironic, isn’t it? And with today’s results, it was shocking. Really.

The show was good despite the lack of glamor like the other glitzy pageants, focusing on the soul of the pageant itself — Beauty with a Purpose.

From among the 20, only 11 moved to the semi-finals and these include the five finalists mentioned above and the candidates from Belgium, Brazil, USA, Korea, China PR, and Mongolia who won the People’s Choice award.

That’s pretty sums up what happened tonight, breaking the hearts of real pageant lovers in the end. Till our broken hearts heal.

Miss World 2016 winners
Miss World 2016 winners Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, and Indonesia.
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