Thailand will host its first IronKids Triathlon event at Thanyapura Sports & Leisure Club in Phuket on 23 April 2011, further enhancing the island’s reputation for staging major triathlon, marathon and Ironman events.
IronKids Race Director, Claire Ratcliffe said the event is not only about the eligible children aged between 6 and 15 years having a great sense of achievement, but she also wants them to have fun. A second Phuket event will be held on 3 December 2011. Another IronKids event is also held in the Philippines.
“The whole idea is not to win and challenge the kids. It is to give them a sense of achievement at their own fitness level. They don’t have to be athletic to participate. It is about achievement from taking part,” Ms Ratcliffe said.
Children from Malaysia, Singapore, Bangkok and Phuket have already registered.
Jürgen Zäck,, Germany’s eight time world Ironman champion, will help some children prepare for the IronKids. He said, “It is the same as for adults. Anyone making it to the finish line can call themselves an Ironman. It is the same spirit for the adults as for the kids.”
Mr Zäck has joined TLSC to advise TLSC members and local and international visitors in triathlon training, including children.
IronKids participants are divided into junior [6-8 years] intermediate [9-11] and senior [12-15]. Starting at 8am at TLSC to capture the cool morning air, the IronKids will compete over the following courses using the TLSC 50 metre Olympic sized swimming pool, the surrounding roads and a newly laid athletics track.
Junior 1 x 50m 3k flat out and back 500m
Intermediate 3 x 50m 6km flat out and back
Some cross country 1.5 km
Senior 6 x 50m 12km over hills and flat 3 km
Two aid stations will be posted at the bike and run transitions and a sponge station at the end. TLSC will also have receptacles for water bottles and other recyclable materials, plus a “toy drop”, Ms Ratcliffe urges children and parents to bring along old or unwanted toys that will later be distributed to four toy libraries on Phuket.
Each child will receive a medal and there will be trophies for the first three finishers in each age group. The seniors will be divided into two groups [12-13 years and 14-15 years].
Every child will also receive a pack comprising a T-shirt, race bib, bike water bottle, swim cap, and cold water drink.
The entry fee is Baht750 for individuals and Baht 1500 for teams of three people.
Local Businesses can now sponsor a team of 10 children to race in the event. The Baht 15,000 Baht fee will cover 10 race entry fees, 10 children’s pool party tickets and 2 adult pool party tickets.
Ratcliffe said, “This is an ideal opportunity for local businesses to enter a team of children from their staff.” Teams will be helped with bike hire if they do not have bikes and all children will be invited to the after event pool party.
Bangkok will also be playing host to WSDE Sport Tourism Expo which will be held in Bangkok, Thailand - Asia’s Sport Tourism Gateway - from 27-29 September 2011.