It was announced today that USA Triathlon and the Professional Triathletes Organisation have joined forces with Challenge North America to be part of its iconic Challenge Daytona race at Daytona International Speedway on December 4th, 5th and 6th. The three-day triathlon festival will attract athletes from around the world to compete at the “World Centre of Racing” and will feature an array of different events, including age-grouper sprint and middle-distance events, junior challenges, a Pro-Am relay and will culminate with a PTO Middle Distance World Championship Race with a $1,000,000 prize purse for the world’s top professional triathletes.
William Christy, CEO of Challenge North America said, “In often a divided world, triathlon has been a unifying force for athletes across the globe. We come together to compete as a family of global athletes. The global pandemic has displaced athletes and cancelled races and now more than ever, our world needs to unite. Our festival allows us to cheer and compete for a shared cause.”
Charles Adamo, PTO Chairman, said “The PTO is pleased to be able to work with the USA Triathlon and Challenge Daytona to support the triathlon community to provide race opportunities for athletes. Since many professional events have been cancelled and some races rescheduled without a professional prize purse, the PTO is committing $1,000,000 of prize money for the PTO Middle Distance World Championship.”
In addition, the PTO Championships on December 6th, the Challenge Daytona Festival weekend will include a wide array of events catering to athletes of all ages and abilities. The event weekend is anticipated to host the following events:
- PTO Middle Distance World Championships
- Sprint and Middle-Distance Triathlons
- Junior Challenge kids’ race
- Pro Am Relay Race
- 5K/10K run/walk events
- Relay categories
- Duathlon and Aquabike events
The top six male and female finishers in each Middle-Distance Triathlon age group will qualify for entry in The Championship, to be held in May 2021 at the x-bionic sphere in Samorin, Slovakia.
Zibi Szlufcik, Challenge Family President of the Board, commented, “While there is still uncertainty associated with the effects of the global pandemic, we know that planning, preparation and hope must continue for the triathlon community. Our teams are busy making the necessary preparations for what we all hope will be a tribute to our sport.”
About Challenge North America
Challenge North America is led by athletes to enhance race experience for athletes and their families. Their mission is to advance the sport with family-friendly, professionally managed and family inspired races for all ages and all race abilities. Challenge North America is extending the legacy of Challenge Family to the North American triathlon market. With the experience of almost 40 full and middle distances in 26 different countries, Challenge North America has founded a new hallmark event at the iconic Daytona International Speedway, home of “The Great American Race”—the Daytona 500, and voted “Best New Race” 2018 by Triathlete Magazine.
About Challenge Daytona
Are you ready to swim, bike, and run at the “World Centre of Racing”? From December 4th- 6th, 2020, Daytona International Speedway will welcome triathletes and triathlon fans from around the world to Challenge Daytona. Named “Best New Race” 2018 by Triathlete Magazine, the entire festival of events will take place at the approximately 500-acre motorsports complex, home of “The Great American Race”—the Daytona 500.
About USA Triathlon
USA Triathlon is proud to serve as the National Governing Body for triathlon in the United States, as well as duathlon, aquathon, aquabike, winter triathlon, off-road triathlon and para-triathlon. Founded in 1982, USA Triathlon sanctions more than 4,300 events and connects with more than 400,000 members each year, making it the largest multi-sport organisation in the world.
In addition to its work at the grassroots level with athletes, coaches, and race directors — as well as the USA Triathlon Foundation — USA Triathlon provides leadership and support to elite athletes competing at international events, including International Triathlon Union (ITU) World Championships, Pan American Games and the Olympic and Paralympic Games. USA Triathlon is a proud member of the ITU and the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee (USOPC).
About The Professional Triathletes Organisation
The Professional Triathletes Organisation is a not-for-profit entity representing the body of professional triathletes and seeks to showcase the passion, talents, determination, struggles and achievements of the dedicated professionals who strive to realise the highest levels of the sport and inspire all those who are a part of the triathlon community.
Alice Hector is an athlete ambassador for Sundried and is an elite triathlete. She has been racing as a professional triathlete since 2014 and is coached by Hywel Davies. She is an Ironman 70.3 champion, 2 times Israman champion, and has collected wins and podiums at several 70.3 and full ironman distance races. She is also a freelance copywriter and fitness model who has appeared in a number of fitness and athletics magazines.
Now to add to her plethora of sporting titles, Alice has won the Volcano triathlon in Lanzarote, which is the oldest international triathlon in Spain. She was even able to control it enough in order to conserve energy for Challenge Lisbon the following weekend!
Alice says that this win felt fantastic and she is really looking forward to her next series of races.
From all here at Team Sundried, Good Luck Alice and massive congratulations on a fantastic win!
The challenge of triathlon is coming to Southend 2017, sponsored by Sundried.
Southend triathlon will take place on 28th May 2017, a sprint distance event with a 750m open water swim, 20km ride around local country roads and a sea air 5km run along the coastline.
This is a perfect event for athletes looking to achieve a personal best or first timers looking for a simple course to enter the world of triathlon.
Sundried’s sprint triathlon is taking place to raise funds for charity Haven’s Hospice.
Haven’s Hospice makes “Every Day Count" for children & adults with life-limiting illnesses in Essex. When a family has been told that there’s no cure for their loved one’s illness and all that can be done is to make life comfortable, Havens Hospices can help.
Both hospices help by controlling pain and medication, offering respite and caring for adults, babies, children and teenagers at the end of their lives. This free, specialist care is there for as long as it’s needed, within the home and at the charity’s two hospices.
Havens Hospices is a registered charity – not part of the NHS – and receives limited government funding. The organisation must raise over £100,000 every week to be there for everyone who needs its care.
After researching our local area and discovering there is no longer a triathlon present, Sundried wishes to return the sport of triathlon to Southend, particularly as it’s gaining popularity after the Brownlee brothers' outstanding success in this year's Olympics.
The event aims to encourage triathletes and first-time athletes in the local area to compete on their home turf and raise money for charity. In the future, we look to bring an extended event, with a full Olympic distance and fitness show.
On Sunday 17th June 2018, Sundried hosted the second annual Southend Triathlon. Open to 600 competitors, this sprint triathlon consisted of a 750m open water swim in the Thames Estuary, a 20km flat lapped bike course along the seafront road which was closed to traffic, and a 5k run around the local park used for Parkrun.
32% of the athletes were female, which is a great result in this stereotypically male-dominated sport. 240 of the athletes had never completed a triathlon before while another 240 were experienced or professional triathletes. We were happy to advertise this event as being perfect for novices and experienced triathletes alike with its searingly fast and uninterrupted bike course and spectator-friendly swim and run.
We also enjoyed a fantastic turn-out from triathlon clubs, both local and further afield. The largest club presence was from local triathlon club JBR Run & Tri who had 42 triathletes representing them. The second largest was from the East London Triathletes and there was also a big presence from East Essex Triathlon club.
The overall winner of the race was local boy and Sundried ambassador Matt Leeman. Matt recently turned pro and has been enjoyed a fantastic start to his professional triathlon career. Our fastest lady was professional triathlete and Ironman champion Alice Hector. Alice is also a Sundried ambassador and is a fantastic role model for female athletes.
Southend Triathlon 2018 saw triathletes of all shapes and sizes, all ages, and some with all the gear and expensive triathlon bikes but equally plenty on a mountain bike in their gym gear just out having a great day, and that is truly the heart of our event: making sport accessible for all.
Chris Hargraves: "Thanks for the event. My first tri & really enjoyed it."
Mark Whitney: Thanks for a great day and all your efforts."
Linsey McCarthy: "Thank you for a great event. My first tri & absolutely loved it."
Clive Trevelian Cheese: "Great day well organised."
Dave Jacobs: "Thank you for a great day hope to see you again next year."
Claire Joyce: "Great effort! Well done to the organisers and all the marshals."
Sally Smith: "Absolutely loved it and definitely will be back next year."
Richard Whan: "My first Tri. Event was very well organised. Marshalls/officials were very supportive throughout. Crowds were encouraging too. Loved the whole experience. Thank you Southend Tri!"
Dan Robinson: "A great day, very well organised and run, especially with the water the way it was, thank you all at Southend triathlon."
Victoria Smillie: "Thoroughly enjoyed, even the sea swim! Great organisation, volunteers and supporters!"
Jo Fenn: "Thanks to organisers, volunteers and loads of supporters. I had a great day."
David Lloyd Clubs: "Thanks for having us Southend Triathlon. We had a great day cheering all the athletes on and ‘sending them Home’ to the final run. From the first chap to the last couple you smashed it well done!"
Russell Larthe: "Great effort from all involved at the Southend triathlon... great event, glad to be part of it."
Matt Bicks: "Southend Triathlon was brilliant. The crowd and stewards were so good cheering everyone from the first to the last competitor Well done everyone!"
What better way is there to spend your Sunday lunchtime encased in a world of pain for an hour or more?
To be honest, other than Yorkshire puddings and roasties, I'm sure you'll agree not much beats a Sprint Triathlon (right?)
Southend-on-Sea provided a great location for the first Sundried Triathlon. The town really welcomed the event and a whopping 2500 people came out to support the 300 athletes, many of whom were competing in their first triathlon.
The swim took place in the Thames Estuary with a refreshing midday start, due to the tide times. 1 hour before the start all we could see was mud flats for miles. I'm familiar with a non-wetsuit swim, but a non-water swim? That would be a first.
There was no need to worry. A mini tsunami came in as scheduled and the bay rapidly filled with clean salt water. We flip-flopped our way 500m along the sea front to the start, (flip-flops were then deposited back at the start for us), and the swim was simply point-to-point parallel with the beach: great for nervous swimmers who didn't have to venture far out their depth, and nice for spectators who could walk along and see the race unfold.
After failing to hold the fast feet of the lead man who set off beside me, I found another set, then decided to have a go on my own and make it hurt. The speed that is easy in a draft becomes really hard when in front, and I probably should have stayed where I was, but as this was a training race there was no need for energy conservation!
A smooth transition and we were quickly on to the fast, flat but quite technical bike course. The organisers are talking about a closed-road multi-lap affair for next year which I think would really draw the crowds in further and give it the buzz of a French Grand Prix tri: something the UK scene could really benefit from. I lost one place to another fast boy through the 20km bike leg, finishing up that bit in 4th; feeling rather power-deprived throughout. Some days you're the firework, some, the damp squib.
The run was out and back along the sea-front where people out for their Sunday stroll probably wondered why all these lycra-loving lovelies were self-flagellating themselves upon this Day of Rest, but they were giving great words of encouragement and seemed really into the spirit of the event: Southend seems to be a perfect match for a triathlon.
So, back to the run. 2.5k in a straight line does seem a long way, and to turn around and repeat the feat was another painful prospect, especially when you could see the Sundried finish banner over a mile away in the distance, not getting any closer...
Coming into a shorter triathlon as a longer distance athlete, you have visions of it 'being over quickly' and being 'no big deal' but I tell you what, Sprint is long and Sprint is hard! And I could only seem to muster limited speed anyway, but it was hurting as much as I could make it, so will hopefully prove an excellent training session as part of my preparation for the European 70.3 champs in 3 weeks’ time.
Coming to the finish, I didn't have much time to celebrate the female win and 3rd place overall as I was very aware of the clock ticking close to 60 minutes, and I always enjoy dipping under an hour in a Sprint. Sadly, I was 25 seconds too fat, but this will come in the next few weeks as I start to sharpen up for my first peak of the season. A couple of kilos makes a lot of difference to speed!
I would like to thank Sundried for their support of me as a pro triathlete this year, providing great PR opportunities as well as beautifully crafted clothing, and now adding another string to their bow: by producing a fantastic first event. Sundried really does stand for quality through and through. I look forward to seeing how the Southend Triathlon develops in years to come, and will definitely be back for that sub 1 hour in the future!
About the author: Alice Hector is a prolific elite professional triathlete, having already won the Volcano Triathlon in Lanzarote earlier this year. She is also a professional fitness model and has done lots of work with Sundried as an athlete ambassador.