Momentum for the 2017 IRONMAN UK event in Bolton is gathering pace with the event less than two months away. Taking place on 16 July, IMUK has become one of the standout events on the IRONMAN calendar meaning that the town of Bolton in Lancashire can look forward to a strong influx of visitors over the event period.
The town comes alive around the event with thousands of spectators once again expected to support over 2500 athletes from 45 different countries. The IRONMAN UK weekend not only brings athletes, but also their friends and families and adding to the festival nature of the weekend is the world’s biggest IRONKIDS event, IRONKIDS UK. IRONKIDS UK is already sold out with 2500 children between the ages of 3 and 14 ready to enjoy a run finishing under the same finish arch where the IRONMAN athletes will finish the next day.
The event is expected to provide a significant tourism boost to the city and region, with over 2400 of the competing athletes travelling to the region. The hospitality and tourism industries in particular are set to benefit from the event. According to the organising team, each athlete travels with on average 4.6 travelling companions, and will stay in the region for an average of 3.8 days. Over 13000 people are expected to travel to Bolton requiring over 50000 bed nights during their stay.
“IRONMAN UK is a special event with a strong history and reputation for being a challenging but fair race,” said Sam Brawn, IRONMAN UK Race Director. “The town of Bolton has truly embraced the event with stories of the legendary spectator support having travelled around the world. We look forward to welcoming over 2500 athletes as we prepare for our best race day yet.”
He continued, “We encourage local establishments to take advantage of the event and play their part in adding to the atmosphere of the weekend. The event presents a great opportunity to showcase the town to the visiting athletes from around the UK and the world.”
The 2.4-mile swim takes place in Pennington Flash. Here, there are numerous viewing opportunities for spectators at the start and T1. The course will take athletes on a 112-mile, two-loop journey from Pennington Flash and into the Lancashire countryside. The bike course includes the famous Sheep House Lane climb twice as well as Babylon Lane where spectators can get up close and personal with the athletes in true Tour de France style.
The run begins at T2 at the Macron Stadium and athletes will head into the Bolton town centre, where they complete three loops of a circuit before finishing in Le Mans Crescent in the shadow of the Albert Hall to the applause of thousands of spectators.