The excitement and fun is about to get doubled with the holding of not just one but two IronMan 70.3 races next year here in the Philippines.
It will be a busy year for triathletes after Wilfred Steven Uytengsu Jr., president of the Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI), made the announcement during the “Meet the Pros” presscon for the recently-concluded Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines, which happened over the weekend.
Uytengsu said that the event will be called the Century Tuna IronMan 70.3 Philippines and will be held during the first quarter of 2015.
“In 2015, we have a better lineup of events, we have two 70.3s and two 5150s,” Uytengsu said.
Aside from the 70.3 races, the SEI is also the licensed organizer of the Century Tuna 5150 Triathlon and the Safeguard Active 5150 Triathlon.
The 5150 Triathlon, an international distance triathlon competition, is another branded race of the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), which also owns the IronMan and the IronMan 70.3 brands. 5150 refers to the total number of kilometers that a triathlete has to complete, which is a 1.5-kilometer swim, a 40k bike ride and a 10k run, in the event.
The first of this year’s 5150 Triathlon—the Century Tuna 5150 Triathlon was held at the Subic Bay last June and was ruled by three-time Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines female champion Caroline Steffen of Switzerland and Australia’s Casey Munro.
The second 5150 Triathlon dubbed as the Safeguard Active 5150 Triathlon will be held in Bohol on Sept. 28, 2014.
Uytengsu, however, stopped short of announcing the venues for next year’s IronMan 70.3s. The event was contracted to be held here in Cebu for three years starting in 2012 but SEI did not confirm an extension of the Cobra Energy Drink IronMan 70.3 Philippines on the Cebu Province island where the event had achieved so much growth from 583 participants on its first edition in 2009 in Camsur to 2,500 in this year’s edition with about 500 on the waiting list.
Negotiations, however, are ongoing for a three-year extension of the event here.
Uytengsu himself have repeatedly said that they would love to come back to Cebu for next year’s edition barring the improvement of road conditions.
The road conditions have always been one of the chief problems of organizers and participants since the first edition here in Cebu in 2012.
In an evaluation that saw last year’s Cobra Energy Drink Ironman 70.3 Philippines ranking second best in the world by the WTC, Princess Galura, SEI project director, said that the event got the lowest rating in the road conditions.
Despite that, the professional athletes such as this year’s champions—Canada’s Brent McMahon and Steffen have said they are willing to return to Cebu for the race.
Even Australia’s Sam Betten, who placed second in the Male Pros, and USA’s Katya Meyer, who finished fifth in the Female Pros, first timers in this year’s edition, also expressed their willingness to race in Cebu again.
Aside from wanting to raise the road conditions to international standards, the organizing SEI is also concerned if the road works to be undertaken with Cebu as one of the host in next year’s Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit, will be done in time for the event’s scheduled date.