AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND (July 13, 2012) -- IRONMAN Triathlon, one of the biggest names in triathlon worldwide, will stage a new annual IRONMAN 70.3 championship event in Auckland next January.
IRONMAN 70.3 Auckland will be designated as the official Asia Pacific Championships. This provides an additional opportunity for athletes to qualify for the annual IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship at Las Vegas, USA.
The race on Sunday 20 January 2013 will showcase iconic Auckland landscapes with a swim in the Viaduct Harbour, a bike course that includes the Auckland Harbour Bridge and a run along the Auckland waterfront.
IRONMAN 70.3 Auckland brings the IRONMAN Series, the largest participation sports platform in the world, full circle back to Auckland. The city was the first international race venue chosen when the IRONMAN brand began its global growth in the mid-80’s. Today the brand continues to growth with more than 30 IRONMAN and 60 IRONMAN 70.3 races around the world annually over 150,000 participants annually.
A mainstay in the IRONMAN Series, IRONMAN New Zealand was staged in Auckland for 14 years, based at Mission Bay and then St. Heliers, before moving to Taupo in 1999. The race has attracted more than 22,000 participants, more than half from overseas.
IRONMAN 70.3 Auckland is expected to attract more than 1,200 professional and age group participants annually including a significant number of international athletes. The event will offer a professional prize purse of $75,000 USD, 1500 professional points for the elite field and 45 age group qualifying slots for the IRONMAN World Championship 70.3.
“New Zealand and Auckland hold a special place in the history of IRONMAN and the sport of triathlon,” said Andrew Messick, CEO of World Triathlon Corporation. “When the IRONMAN team began to expand the event series globally, Auckland was chosen as the first international venue.
“Over the years, New Zealand has embraced the sport of triathlon with an unmatched enthusiasm while producing incredible talent. It’s fitting to bring a major championship to New Zealand and to the magnificent city of Auckland.”
IRONMAN 70.3 Auckland will provide ongoing annual economic benefit as well as international exposure for the city of Auckland, according to event sponsors , Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED).