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2016 Standard Bank 70.3 Ironman race

2016 Standard Bank 70.3 Ironman race

Over 2 500 triathletes are set to flock into the City next week for the 2016 Standard Bank 70.3 Ironman race.

The annual race is in its ninth year and is set to be bigger and better this year with the presence of pro-athletes including defending champions Jodie Swallow from the UK and South African Matt Trautman other athletes to participate are Lucie Zelenkova, James Cunnama, Kent Horner, Kyle Buckingham and Claire Horner.

According to the Ironman 70.3 website (www.ironman.com), Ironman 70.3 South Africa race has significantly contributed to the triathlon boom in South Africa having become the most sought after triathlon on the continent.

“The number of first-time participants over the past three years have averaged around 50 percent meaning that every year at least half of the 3 000 strong athlete field are competing for the very first time, many of which are doing their first ever triathlon,” reads the website. 

“It’s incredibly encouraging to see how this race has been selling out faster and faster every year. It certainly shows a huge appetite for triathlon in South Africa and is now reaching the same popularity in South Africa as other Ironman 70.3 events around the world which sell out within minutes of opening,” said Keith Bowler Managing Director of World Endurance Africa Holdings.

Speaking about the Metro’s readiness for  he triathlon race Executive Mayor for Buffalo City Metro Alfred Mtsi said, “This is an international event and it means lots of work is done by different stakeholders – police, law enforcement, health services, traffic, roads, electricity, community services and the communities out there. All these are working together to make sure that this event is a success, as always.”

He added that the event will also contribute in the job creation plight. “Over 1000 volunteers form part of this and jobs are created during this period. More than 80 percent of service providers come from the Metro which makes it clear that most of the revenue that is generated remains in the City.” 

The race kicks off at 7am and will head off with a 1.9 kilometre swim off Orient Beach in an anticlockwise direction, a 90 kilometre cycle on the N2 highway and a 21.1 kilometre run around the Esplanade.

The swim’s first leg will be 300 metres long – the buoy must be rounded on the right hand side (buoy must be on your left). After turning left around this buoy the next leg is 700 metres, this buoy must also be rounded on the right hand side.

The following leg is 200 metres long and again you must round the buoy on the right. The final leg before the exit to the beach is 500 metres long and you need to round this last buoy on the left. The exit to the beach is 200 metres away.

The cut-off time for the swim is one hour and 10 minutes.

Following the swim is a 90 kilometre cycle on the N2 Highway. The first portion is along the Esplanade (beach front) where after the route follows the R72 motorway towards the Nahoon River.

The route then turns left and follows the N2 highway towards King William’s Town. It is a continuous climb with a few flat sections to the turnaround point at Berlin just outside East London at 45 kilometres.

The return route is on the opposite side of the N2 highway back to transition. Aid Stations will be available at the 18 kilometre, 45 kilometre and 72 kilometre marks. The cut-off time for the cycle is four hours and five minutes.

The last leg is the 21.1 kilometre run around the Esplanade. Triathletes run down the Esplanade, passing the Orient Theatre and along the eastern Esplanade up into John Bailie Road towards Schenker Road. The route turns back on the second loop of the race which also goes out on the pier before turning around to the finishing line.

There will be three aid stations at least two kilometres apart. The cut-off time for the run is three hours and 30 minutes.

 



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