ABU DHABI: Over 600 participants from 57 countries have signed up to what is expected to be the most exciting triathlon race in the region on March 7th – the International Triathlon Union World Triathlon Abu Dhabi. The world’s most prestigious triathlon, taking place in less than three months around the capital’s stunning Corniche, is expected to draw in the best Olympic competitors from around the world.
The ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi replaces the highly successful Abu Dhabi International Triathlon. It will take the event to a new level, with more of the top men and women triathletes in the world now coming to compete in Abu Dhabi as part of the prestigious ITU World Triathlon Series. Event Director, Iain Banner, explained,”This is an evolution of a great event and we are glad to be bringing to Abu Dhabi an even bigger race to suit athletes, of all abilities and experience levels. Whether keen amateur, club runner or first timer the ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi offers a distance to suit your goals.” Already 635 people have registered to take part with around 1,400 places still up for grabs on the official event website. Now part of the ITU World Triathlon Series, the season opener in Abu Dhabi is a must-do event for amateurs and professionals alike regionally and internationally.
The new format race features three course options: Sprint (0.5km swim, 20km cycle, 5km run), Olympic (1.5km swim, 40km cycle, 10km run) and Maxi (2km swim, 80km cycle, 20km run). All course options can also be run with friends or family as a team relay. The Olympic and Maxi courses have proven to be the most popular for international participants, with a total of 480 entries for the two race formats to date.
Ahead of announcing the race course this month, Banner commented, “Together with the ITU we have just finalised the course and will publish the details very soon. The course has been designed to enhance the experience for both athletes and spectators on the day while keeping Abu Dhabi’s iconic setting off Abu Dhabi’s Blue Flagged beach,” added Banner.
Organised by the Abu Dhabi Sports Council and the ITU, the ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi is expecting about 2,000 entries to line up on March 7th. The event will be headquartered at the Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club where a spectator-friendly environment including a 2,000-seater grandstand, a bike park, a ‘Friends and Family’ area, refreshment kiosks and a kids’ zone will be built.
The International Triathlon Union is the world governing body for the Olympic sport of Triathlon and all related Multisport disciplines including Duathlon, Aquathlon, Cross Triathlon and Winter Triathlon. ITU was founded in 1989 at the first ITU Congress in Avignon, France. Headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, ITU also has offices in Vancouver, Canada and Madrid, Spain. It now has over 160 affiliated National Federations on five continents and is the youngest International Federation in the Olympic Games.