Pro-Am Serendib Urges Sri Lanka To Gear Up For Global IRONMAN Triathlon

(L-R) M.S.P Bandara – Director General Sports, Ministry of Sports, Chris McFall – Director of Sales & Marketing, Shangri-la Hotel, Colombo, Rajan Thananayagam, Hon. Dayasiri Jayasekara –Minister of Sports, Julian Bolling, Yasas Hewage, Ms. Upekha Wickramaratne, Carl Smith – Operations Manager, IRONMAN Asia

Pro-Am Serendib (Pvt) Ltd., the official licensee of the World Triathlon Corporation and owner of the IRONMAN global triathlon brand, is gearing up to hold a prestigious international sporting event in Sri Lanka, which is  the only IRONMAN event the South Asian region. The company will hold The IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo, which is a qualifying event for triathletes to qualify to participate in the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa.

Scheduled for 25th February 2018, the event will feature a 1.9 km sea swim, 90km bike ride and a 21.1 km run – all to be completed by either an individual or as a team within a 7-hour period. In addition, another prestigious event, IRONKIDS, will be held on 24th February 2018 to encourage children between the ages of 7 to 13 to participate and earn the title of IRONKIDS.  The venue for both events will be Galle Face Green. The Ministry of Sports and The Ministry of Tourism have endorsed Pro-Am Serendib’s initiative to hold IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo while acknowledging the immense benefits, prestige and international attention it will bring to Sri Lanka. The ministries have further pledged its fullest support and cooperation to ensure the event is a success. Shangri-La Hotel, Colombo is the Official Host Hotel for IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo whilst Hayleys Tours is the Official Travel Partner of the event.

There are 255 IRONMAN branded events globally and none in the South Asian region. The Brand being a multisport anchored on Sun, Sea and Sand as well as the road infrastructure for cycling with the need for precision in execution perfectly blends into the desired positioning of Brand Sri Lanka for 2020. Sports tourism is an emerging trend in Sri Lanka, which requires a strategic thrust. Recent marathon, swimming and cycling events held on a smaller scale reveal the market is ripe for an event of the magnitude of IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo. “We are excited about this announcement as we are expanding our portfolio of races – especially in South Asia where the number of IRONMAN athletes is growing every year.” said Geoff Meyer – Asia Managing Director for IRONMAN. “We have been looking for the right partner to start our first event in South Asia and we are excited to work with

Pro-Am Serendib (Pvt) Ltd. to organize a great race in Colombo.”

The event is expected to attract around 750-1000 athletes and another 1500 as crew, families and friends, providing a boost to the tourism industry in Sri Lanka, as this is the first sporting event of this magnitude to be held in Sri Lanka.

This event aims to support the national reconciliation and integration efforts of the government by encouraging local athletes from the North and the South to form teams and participate at this event. This is an event by Sri Lankans for Sri Lankans and not only for the social elites but will engage the rural population to be part of this event as well through targeted campaigns.

Pro-Am Serendib is hopeful that IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo will become an annual event, putting Sri Lanka on the global triathlon map. The sport of triathlon has a huge potential to become a mainstream sport in Sri Lanka and this event will provide a perfect platform to inspire local athletes. The company hopes to hold a number of activities to promote the sport of triathlon in Sri Lanka to eventually achieve at least 20% local representation at the event.

With international hotels such as Shangri-La, Sheraton, Marriott, Grand Hyatt, Movenpick opening in 2017 onwards and 7 other BOI hotel projects in the pipeline, IRONMAN 70.3 Colombo event in February 2018 would be able to attract high profile, affluent, high-spending travelers to Sri Lanka and thereby contribute to Sri Lanka’s target of 4 million tourist arrivals by 2020, while leveraging on the trend to become a regional hub for sports tourism.



Comments are closed

CG Colombo Gazette

Photo Gallery