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Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship Announced

Media Release
13-Nov-2009

World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) and Laguna Resorts & Hotels announce the inaugural Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship to be held on Dec. 5, 2010. The race, set at Laguna Phuket Resort in Phuket, Thailand, will be the culmination of WTC's new Asia-Pacific Ironman 70.3 Event Series. The Laguna Phuket Resort is expected to be the permanent home of this Championship.

"An increased focus on Ironman 70.3 events will foster continued growth in the regional triathlon market," said WTC’s Chief Operating Officer, Steve Meckfessel. “While the region has hosted full-distance Ironman races in Australia, New Zealand, Korea and Japan for more than 20 years, the demand in many countries for longer distance race experiences has evolved. The Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Series will deliver quality event and cultural experiences at premium race venues throughout the region."

“The decision to host the Series Championship event at Laguna Phuket was an easy one,” said Murphy Reinschreiber, WTC’s managing director of Asia-Pacific. “The resort serves as a destination with broad appeal to athletes in all of our markets, including Australia, Singapore, Japan, the U.S. and Europe, and it is a proven and storied triathlon venue.”

Phuket, Thailand is one of the world’s premiere holiday destinations famed for its crystal clear waters, pristine white beaches, stunning natural scenery and variety of attractions and entertainment.

“The management of the Laguna Phuket Resort and the government of Phuket Province are both extremely excited and proud that Phukt has been selected to host the Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship. With 16 years experience hosting the Laguna Phuket Triathlon, we have the know-how and resources to ensure a very successful Asia-Pacific 70.3 Championship event in 2010 and beyond,” commented Michael Ayling, managing director of Laguna Resorts & Hotels Plc . He continues “The Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship at Laguna Phuket will increase the island’s visibility as a venue for world-class sporting events and create energy and pride within the Phuket community, just in time for the tourism high season.”

The Championship race will be centered at the Resort and will incorporate the Laguna Phuket Triathlon’s trademark two-bodies of water swim course including a section in the Andaman Sea, a beach run-over and a section in a Resort lagoon. The bike course will be challenging and spectacular with hilly sections and
winding rural roads through rubber plantations and villages. The two-loop flat run will include Resort roads, paved paths and grass golf-course sections.

The Championship will be held on the traditional weekend of the Laguna Phuket Triathlon, one of the most popular destination races of all time. Over the years, this race attracted many of the sport’s top stars such as Mark Allen, Paula Newby-Fraser, Craig Alexander and Samantha McGlone, who have routinely listed Laguna Phuket as a favorite race due to its venue, organization and tourism experience.

Debbie Dionysius, Assistant Vice President of Destination Marketing, Laguna Resorts & Hotels Plc adds “We are truly honored to be hosting the new Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship at Laguna Phuket. We feel that the many years of hard work and dedication that has gone into organizing the Laguna Phuket Triathlon has been recgnized and rewarded by the international triathlon community, and now we look forward to the new challenge of organizing a 70.3 race in Phuket just one week after the Laguna Phuket Triathln! We plan to create a week of various multisport events to attract visitors from around the globe to stay longer in Phuket to exerience both triathlons plus other events and entertainment.”

Details relating to the 2010 Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific Series will be forthcoming. The Series is expected to include six races and grow to eight -10 races long-term. Athletes will be able to qualify to compete at the Laguna Phuket Asia-Pacific Championship race at Ironman 70.3 races around the world and at selected races in new markets such as the first ever inernational triathlon to be held in India.

The Championship race, produced by WTC will include a $60,000 professional prize purse as well 50 qualifying slots to the 2011 Foster Grant Ironman World Championship 70.3 in Clearwaer, Fla. Entry and qualification procedures will be made available soon. For information, browse www.ironman.com and watch for the launch of www.ironmanphuket.com. For additional information about the Laguna Phuket Resort and the Laguna Phuket Triathlon, visit www.lagunaphuket.com.

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