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2020 Ironman and 70.3 worlds cancelled

For the first time in its 43-year history there will not be an Ironman World Championship this year

Photo by: Kevin Mackinnon

The 2020 editions of the Ironman World Championship and the Ironman 70.3 World Championship are cancelled.

Ironman had originally rescheduled the full-distance world championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii to February, 2021, but the event is now completely off – the next event in Kona will take place on October 9, 2021. (Barring continuing issues due to the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, of course.)

The next Ironman 70.3 World Championship will take place in St. George, Utah on September 17 and 18, 2021. According to a release sent out today, “Ironman is working to secure Taupō, New Zealand as the host destination for the 2022 Ironman 70.3 World Championship.” Taupo was supposed to host the 2020 70.3 worlds.

“As the global COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact events around the world, both world championship events have seen a majority of their respective qualifying events postponed or unable to take place in 2020, impeding the ability to qualify athletes for the respective 2020 world championship events,” the release continued. “Based on the schedule, the continuation of existing travel restrictions worldwide, and other circumstances beyond our control, IRONMAN’s world championship events cannot proceed as rescheduled.”

“While we were hopeful that we could welcome our athletes, their families, and supporters to these events in early 2021, the continued impact of the pandemic makes this impossible. It is tough to make this decision in July, but it will provide the necessary clarity for our athletes, host cities and partners,” said Andrew Messick, President & Chief Executive Officer for The Ironman Group. “It is disappointing not to be able to provide our racing community with the opportunity to compete in the Ironman World Championship for the first time in our 43 year history and our Ironman 70.3 World Championship for the first time since inception in 2006. We will endure, however, and look forward to the day when we will again assemble the greatest professional and age-group triathletes in the world and crown world champions.”

Athletes who have qualified for this year’s championship events will be able to race in either the 2021 or 2022 world championship events.

Athletes who earned qualifying slots for the Ironman 70.3 World Championship through the Virtual Racing Championship Series will get slots for the 2021 event in St. George.