IRONMAN has today announced that athletes registered with the IRONMAN TriClub Program will be given an additional opportunity to qualify for the 2016 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, Sunshine Coast. Next year’s IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship on Australia’s Sunshine Coast takes place on 4 September 2016 in the tourist resort of Mooloolaba, Queensland.
The additional 45 slots will be split between athletes racing at IRONMAN 70.3 Western Sydney, IRONMAN 70.3 Ballarat, and next year’s IRONMAN 70.3 Geelong, with each race receiving 15 of the extra qualifying slots.
“This is a great opportunity for athletes in the IRONMAN TriClub Program to benefit from their loyalty and experience racing at a World Championship in their home country,” IRONMAN Asia-Pacific CEO Geoff Meyer said.
At each race, the 15 slots will be distributed evenly across each of the five TriClub divisions. One slot will go to the highest ranked TriClub athlete age group finisher under 25 (male or female), and one each to the highest ranked TriClub age group male and female finisher.
“Testing yourself against the best athletes in the world, at home, with family and friends on the sidelines is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Meyer added.
The ‘highest rank’ refers to the athlete with the most Age Group Ranking (AGR) points earned at the applicable event. In the event of a tie, the athlete with the fastest time will determine the winner.
Using the Age Group Ranking system, the total available points for an IRONMAN 70.3 is 3,500 points. Awarded points are calculated based on the athlete’s race finish time behind the first finisher in his/her age group. Points continue to drop as the race time increases, until the points reach a ‘point floor’, i.e. 700 for an IRONMAN 70.3, at which point they don’t drop any further.
There is a value to the minutes and seconds in each race distance. For example, if an athlete wins their age group at an IRONMAN, he or she is awarded 3,000 points. If finishing in second place a minute behind the leader, the athlete is awarded 2,988 points.
The IRONMAN TriClub Program aims to give back to the clubs that support not only the sport of triathlon, but IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 racing. By joining the free program, clubs can receive benefits ranging from social networking and interaction, attracting new members, and the chance to race against one another all year long for prizes and bragging rights.
Internationally, IRONMAN notes that the program includes over 800 clubs with rosters that represent over 150,000 athletes.