Ricochet News

Only 150 days until the IRONMAN African Championship hits the Bay

Nov 17, 2017
Only 150 days until the IRONMAN African Championship hits the Bay

Nelson Mandela Bay is just 150 days away from yet another historic weekend of action ahead of the 14th edition of the annual Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship taking place at Hobie Beach on Sunday 15 April 2018.

With 2 200 anticipated athletes and their loved ones set to descend on our city, each bringing an average of 3.5 people with them, totalling 7 000 people into the city for multiple nights. Nelson Mandela Bay is excited to host the 2018 Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship together with over 2 000 volunteers. All will be hard at work in making sure the athletes get the best out of the race.    

With athletes needing to acclimatise and train on the race route, they are expected to arrive in the city from Monday prior to the race and depart Monday post-race. The foreign athletes traditionally stay the following week to tour our city and visit the many tourist attractions that Eastern Cape has to offer.

To kick of what is set to be an eventful weekend both the Corporate Triathlon Challenge powered by Algoa FM, which has been sold out for the last five years, and one of the most exciting children’s aquathlon, the Spur IRONKIDS sponsored by Pritt, are set to once again exceed expectations. Entries for both events are now open with limited entries available.

“Spur IRONKIDS has become a key feature in the IRONMAN weekend, bringing the family element to it. It is terrific to see so many kids getting outside and participating in a healthy activity, and doing so joyfully. Hopefully this inspires the kids to adopt a healthy, active lifestyle from a young age and maybe even go on to one day emulate their IRONMAN heroes in years to come,” says Keith Bowler, IRONMAN South Africa Managing Director.

It is more than just the athletes that are excited, as spectators are itching to get the event started, “I have watched the IRONMAN event for a couple of years now and it never fails to live up to the hype. Each year I stay up until mid-night to welcome the last bunch of athletes home,” says Grant Miskin (23), a local resident. It is one of the toughest races in the world, and one of the key aspects that bring athletes home are its supporters coming in drones throughout the day.

The race begins with an early morning fresh 3,8km sea swim with the water temperature averaging 20.9 degrees celsius. Athletes then head straight onto the bike as they go onto two flat fast laps of 90km on one of the most breath-taking bike courses on the IRONMN circuit. Lastly, athletes take on a full marathon that brings them closer to their fans and friends pushing them to end on a high.

The event acts as a perfect taster of the much anticipated IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship set to take Nelson Mandela Bay by storm on Saturday, September 1st and Sunday, September 2nd, 2018. It is the first time an IRONMAN World Championship event will be held on the African continent.

To stay up to date with all the latest news, race schedules and race updates, participants and spectators are encouraged to download the IRONMAN South Africa App, available for download free on Android and iOS.