Colombo set for Ironman 70.3 | Sunday Observer

Colombo set for Ironman 70.3

Ironman 70.3 Colombo will bring in a revenue of around US$ 3 million to the country within a week in an unprecedented international event that would put the country on top of the world map, the event organizers said last week, with the countdown beginning for the iconic event.

The Ironman 70.3 Colombo Triathlon will kickoff at the Galle Face Green on February 25. This marks the first time Sri Lanka would be hosting a high profile global event with over 880 triathletes from 64 countries. The event is organized by Pro-Am Serendib.

According to the organizers, over 2,340 visitors have confirmed attendance and the number is expected to increase in the run up to the event.

Pro Am Serendb Director Yasas Hewage said the stage is set and come February 25 Colombo will be bustling with a hive of activity.

“The Ironman 70.3 Colombo is not only a sports event but a sport tourism event that will put Sri Lanka on the map as a destination for sports tourism,” Hewage said.

This is the only Triathlon event to be held in South Asia with no barriers to age and gender. According to organizers while the youngest participant is 21 the oldest is 81 years.

“Age is not a barrier for sports. Often people forget the sportsman in him or her and give in to age to decide his lifestyle. Ironman is an opportunity to test one’s grit and never say no,” Hewage said.

Julian Bolling, the country’s one time medal winning swimmer has been inspiring swimmers and athletes to be daring and take the plunge. He urged youngsters to grab the opportunity to showcase their strength and courage in taking part in an iconic event.

The Colombo triathlon will comprise a participant from Sri Lankan ancestral community and also a visually impaired person.

The race will commence with a 1.9 km open water swim near the Galle Face Green which will be followed by a 90 km bike leg through the Colombo port and the Marine Drive and a 21.1km run prior to the finish at the Galle Face.

Ironman Triathlon is one of a series of long-distance triathlon races organized by the World Triathlon Corporation comprising a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bicycle ride and a 26.22-mile marathon. A participant who completes the triathlon within the time limits is designated an Ironman.

Around 90 percent of the participants are professionals in fields such as legal, retail, education, marketing, technology, medical and financial and the average income of an Ironman is US$ 175,000. Males account for around 71 percent of the participants in the competition.