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New race added to Penticton’s Ironman

Half-distance event serves as new addition to Ironman in 2024
Penticton’s Jeff Symonds finished in first place at Ironman Penticton in 2022. The event was cancelled in 2023 and will return in 2024 with the addition of a half-distance. (Brennan Phillips Western News)

A half-distance race first introduced in Whistler last decade will debut at Penticton’s Ironman this summer.

Event organizers said the 70.3 Ironman race has been added to this year’s event, set for Aug. 25.

The triathlon begins with a 1.9-km swim in Okanagan Lake, before challenging athletes to a 91.5-km bike ride through the valley and 21.1-km run along the KVR Trail and Penticton lakeside. That totals about 113 kilometres, or 70.3 miles, hence the name of the event.

“Penticton has played a prominent role in the history of Ironman, and we know athletes will enjoy getting the opportunity to race an Ironman 70.3 triathlon through the stunning landscapes and challenging terrain that the Okanagan Valley has to offer,” said Tim Brosious, regional director at the Ironman Group.

The 70.3-mile event first debuted at Whistler’s Ironman in 2016 but hadn’t been featured at any triathlon since 2019.

This year’s 70.3 race in Penticton will offer qualifying spots for the 2025 VinFast Ironman 70.3 World Championship, set to be hosted by Marbella, Spain.

With the half-distance race set to open the field for more athletes, Penticton Mayor Julius Bloomfield said he looks forward to welcoming the event to the city.

“For athletes, it’s a chance to accomplish an incredible feat in one of the competition’s most iconic settings,” Bloomfield said. “For the community, it’s an opportunity to welcome more athletes, more support team members and more spectators to town so we can show off everything Penticton has to offer. This is a win-win for all involved.”

Penticton’s Ironman was cancelled in 2023, amid concerns over wildfires and travel restrictions last August.

Registration for the 70.3 Ironman will open on Feb. 21, and be accessed here.

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