World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) today announced that IRONMAN® 70.3® St. George has been designated as the official IRONMAN 70.3 U.S. Pro Championship in 2013 and 2014. The race, scheduled for Saturday, May 4, 2013, shifts the pro championship from early April in Galveston, Texas, to St. George in southwest Utah.
“St. George is one of the most scenic and challenging venues on the IRONMAN 70.3 circuit,” said WTC’s Steve Meckfessel, Managing Director of Global Race Operations. “In addition to unmatched community support and a picturesque course, St. George is the ideal location for the IRONMAN 70.3 U.S. Pro Championship as many top pro athletes will race the IRONMAN World Championship 70.3 later in the season on a very similar course.”
The IRONMAN 70.3 St. George course encompasses the scenic backdrop and rolling hills of southwest Utah. The 1.2-mile, one-loop swim takes place in Sand Hollow Reservoir followed by a demanding 56-mile bike that includes a four-mile climb through Snow Canyon State Park. The 13.1-mile, one-loop run wraps up with a spectacular finish in downtown St. George.
“I couldn’t be more excited about the new IRONMAN 70.3 St. George course being the site for the 2013 U.S. Pro Championship,” said Heather Wurtele, professional triathlete and two-time IRONMAN St. George champion. “It is a course truly worthy of a championship event that will offer a stunning and challenging terrain as the proving ground for the top triathletes in the sport. The course, coupled with an incredibly welcoming community full of enthusiastic volunteers, makes this race a must do for 2013 and my husband and I can’t wait to compete.”
“We are excited to continue our partnership with WTC as we host the IRONMAN 70.3 U.S. Pro Championship,” said Jeff Robbins, president & CEO of the Utah Sports Commission. “It provides us with the opportunity to showcase Utah’s beautiful red rock landscape to thousands of visitors and have them experience the friendly hosting efforts of the St. George community.”
IRONMAN 70.3 St. George is one of five regional IRONMAN 70.3 championship races in the world. Other host cities include Auckland, New Zealand; Mandurah, Australia; Panama City, Panama; and Wiesbaden, Germany. The event is a P-1500 race, offering professional athletes a prize purse of $75,000 USD. The race will also offer 75 age-group qualifying slots for the 2013 IRONMAN World Championship 70.3.
“It’s an honor to be associated with the top IRONMAN 70.3 destinations in the world,” said Kevin Lewis, Director of Sports Marketing for the St. George Tourism Office. “The St. George terrain provides a challenging and honest course that brings out the very best in competitors. We are thrilled to host the top pros and the incredible age group athletes who will participate alongside them.”