IRONMAN has announced that Chattanooga, as well as Tennessee and St George, Utah, have been named finalists to host the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship. The championship will rotate back to the USA after last playing host to the event in 2017.
The 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship will be a two-day event, a format that was first adopted in 2017 when the event was held in Chattanooga – with the professional women and age-group women racing on one day and the professional men and age-group men racing on the other.
“Of the many fine cities that vied for consideration to host the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, both Chattanooga and St George stood out,” said Andrew Messick, President & Chief Executive Officer of IRONMAN. “We are excited to move forward with these two finalists as year after year each city shines by providing world championship calibre venues and events for their athletes.
“The IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship showcases world-class competition at outstanding venues from around the globe. We look forward to our upcoming site visits as we determine who will be selected as the host city for the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship triathlon.”
The IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship began in Clearwater, Florida in 2006. Since that time, it has toured destinations around the world with stops in:
- Henderson, Nevada (2011-13);
- Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada (2014);
- Zell am See-Kaprun, SalzburgerLand, Austria (2015);
- Queensland, Australia (2016);
- Chattanooga, Tennessee (2017); and
- Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa (2018).
This year, the 2019 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship will move to Nice, France, before shifting back to the Oceania region in 2020 with Taupõ, New Zealand playing host.
“The 2017 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship brought nearly 15,000 world-class athletes, families, and friends to Chattanooga for the largest IRONMAN 70.3 event ever produced at the time,” said Barry White, President and Chief Executive Officer, Chattanooga Convention and Visitors Bureau. “It is an honour to be selected as a finalist; and we look forward to the opportunity of sharing the Chattanooga experience with competitors and fans for the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship.”
“We are incredibly thankful to be chosen as a finalist and potentially once again showcase Chattanooga to the IRONMAN international community,” said Tim Morgan, President, Chattanooga Sports Committee. “Our community provided an unparalleled experience in 2017 and we are excited with the opportunity to elevate our efforts – we are ready!”
“The St George community is thrilled to be considered for such a significant event,” said Kevin Lewis, Director of Washington County Tourism. “The best athletes in the world have competed here over the past 10 years and their feedback confirms what an unbelievable experience St George provides.
“As a destination we offer a powerful combination of scenery and terrain – including some of the most talked about course features in IRONMAN circles. We back that up with an energetic community full of people who want to make a difference. It’s the kind of experience you want in a world championship and we’re excited for what lies ahead.”
Lewis continued “The St George area is a place of striking contrasts. Visitors from around the globe are drawn here to experience world treasures like Zion National Park and the Grand Canyon, along with thousands of acres of untamed desert terrain just beckoning to be conquered. The colors here will astound you. The perspective will humble you. The immensity will leave you in awe.”
Athletes can compete on these finalist venues in advance of having an opportunity to qualify for the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship as registration for 2019 events in Chattanooga, Tennessee and S. George, Utah are open now.
The IRONMAN 70.3 St George North American Pro Championship triathlon takes place on Saturday, May 4, 2019. The Sunbelt Bakery IRONMAN 70.3 Chattanooga presented by McKee is scheduled for Sunday, May 19, 2019. The Little Debbie IRONMAN Chattanooga presented by McKee will take place on Sunday, September 29, 2019.
Qualification for the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship will begin in July 2020. IRONMAN expects approximately 200,000 registered athletes from around the world to compete at any of the more than 115 events in the global IRONMAN 70.3 Series in locations such as Australia, Brazil, Africa, Malaysia and China to earn a coveted slot.
In addition, each age-group winner at the 2020 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Taupõ, New Zealand will automatically qualify for the 2021 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship.