IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire New Course
It was announced back in August that the popular IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire would be moving from Shugborough Estate into Stafford Town Centre. Well it looks like all the paperwork has now been completed as IRONMAN have just announced details of the new course (official press release below).
We had a quick look at the changes to the bike and run (although official maps are not yet available):
The bike has changed slightly with the removal of a loop section (Six Roads End and Hanbury) and adding the ride into Stafford Town Centre, heading into T2 at the Riverside.
The new run will see athletes running out of T2 alongside the River Sow before heading into Stafford Town Centre to complete 3 laps. Finish is in the centre of Stafford at Market Square.
OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE
NEW COURSE ANNOUNCED FOR IRONMAN 70.3 STAFFORDSHIRE
IRONMAN, Staffordshire County Council and Stafford Borough Council today announced the much anticipated details of the new course for IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire, set to take place 10 June 2018.
It was announced in August that the event would remain in Staffordshire for a further three years with the event hub moving from Shugborough Estate to Stafford Town Centre. The move necessitated a change in course which would see an all-new run course introduced and slightly altered bike course with the swim leg to remain at Chasewater Country Park.
The 56 mile bike leg remains a one lap course through the heart of the Staffordshire countryside with the most notable change the removal of a loop section at Six Roads End and Hanbury. The course continues to take athletes through the Cannock Chase Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, but on the approach back to the second transition area, athletes will continue towards Stafford town centre through Great Haywood and Tixall where the second transition area will be located at Riverway.
Athletes will take on the all-new run course beginning at Riverway. The 13.1 mile course consists of three laps, taking athletes over and alongside the River Sow before heading into Stafford town centre. From here athletes will complete a spectator intensive 3 lap course which will take in the beautiful Victoria Park and weave through the town centre before finishing in Market Square.
“Being able to bring the event into the town centre is a big positive and will certainly add a new dimension to the event both from an athlete and spectator perspective. The new run course will take athletes past some of the best features of the town, giving them ample opportunity to run past supporters on the route,” said Dan James, IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire Race Director.
“The new run route and race venue will ease athlete logistics as well as enable lots more spectators to get closer to the race than ever before and for residents and local businesses to truly experience the buzz and atmosphere of an IRONMAN 70.3 race,” added James.
County Councillor Mark Winnington, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth said: “We’re really pleased that IRONMAN 70.3 is staying in Staffordshire so we’re able to showcase what a fantastic county we have. Interest in the race has been high, and with the announcement of the new route which brings it right into the heart of Stafford, benefitting not only the athletes taking part, but spectators and local businesses too.”
Councillor Mike Smith, Deputy Leader of Stafford Borough Council, said: “We are really pleased IRONMAN has signed up for another three years in Staffordshire and are delighted that the change from bike to run is at Riverway followed by a three lap course for the half marathon in and around Stafford Town Centre finishing in the Market Square. I am sure this will be welcomed by both spectators and competitors who will have great support around the course.
“We have successfully staged fantastic events in the centre of Stafford and this is a great addition to the sporting calendar in the heart of the county town.”
Established in 2015, the IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire quickly grew to become the biggest IRONMAN 70.3 race in the UK. After three years, the event has seen nearly 8000 athletes competing, also attracting some of the UK and the world’s best professional athletes. It also became the fastest selling IRONMAN 70.3 race in the UK selling out within minutes in 2015 and has seen the likes of five-time ITU World Champion and 2012 Olympic silver medallist, Javier Gomez and celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay participating in previous years.
The event is once again expected to attract around 2500 athletes from nearly 40 countries to Staffordshire with entries for the 2018 edition already open.
For more information on the race and to view the new course, please visit the event website.