Taupō will eventually get to host the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, though it will have to wait until 2024 for the privilege.
The New Zealand venue had been scheduled to host the 2020 staging of the race, but that bit the dust due to the onset of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Then it was planned in for 2022, before fears around international travel led to the event staying in St George.
Now though IRONMAN has confirmed that Taupō will be the host in 2024, with the event taking place on December 14 and 15.
President and CEO Andrew Messick said: “Taupō is a historic and iconic destination in the world of IRONMAN, and while the wait to compete there in a world championship event has been longer than we had hoped, we can’t wait to see the best IRONMAN 70.3 athletes from around the globe have an opportunity to race in December 2024.”
Geoff Meyer, Oceania Managing Director for The IRONMAN Group, said: “The additional two-year wait will put us in a position to welcome many more athletes to Taupō than we would have been able to next year, as well as showcasing the region, and New Zealand as a whole, to a global audience.”
IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship schedule
The next three years are now (in theory, pandemic permitting) set in stone:
2022 – St George, Utah, October 28-29
Flavour of the month right now after holding the 2021 Championship earlier this month with Gustav Iden and Lucy Charles-Barclay claiming victory in the PRO races. Also will host the 2022 IRONMAN World Championship on May 7 after the event was moved from Kona due to COVID uncertainty.
2023 – Lahti, Finland, August 26-27
Situated in Southern Finland, Lahti is the gateway to Finnish Lake District and located less than an hour from Helsinki. It currently hosts the IRONMAN 70.3 Finland triathlon, which has become a favorite on the European IRONMAN 70.3 calendar.
2024 – Taupō, New Zealand, December 14-15
New Zealand finally plays host to the event at the third time of asking.