Bumper Field Expected At Laguna Phuket Triathlon
Laguna Phuket prepares to welcome the largest race field ever assembled for the Thai Airways Laguna Phuket Triathlon. One thousand athletes from more than 30 countries are expected to enter the Triathlon and Fun Run on Sunday 4 December at the Laguna Phuket resort complex, in southern Thailand.
Approximately 600 triathletes, including 100 Thai competitors, are expected to compete in the grueling 68.8-kilometre triathlon comprising a 1.8-kilometre swim, 55-kilometre cycle and 12-kilometre run. A total of 35 three-person relay teams will also compete over the same triathlon course with one person doing each leg of the race. Whilst the triathletes are battling it out, there will be a 6-kilometre Fun Run limited to 400 participants hitting the pavement at 9:00am, an hour after the triathlon race start. So there will be plenty of race action for spectators to view.
“The sport of triathlon in Asia has seen enormous growth in the past two years,” explains Paula Himel, Laguna Phuket’s Assistant Race Director, “with thousands of triathletes now entering races in places like Singapore which a few years back only attracted a few hundred entrants. Southeast Asia, like Australia where triathlon is extremely popular, has a climate that allows triathletes to train and compete year round. When the Laguna Phuket Triathlon was first conceived in 1994 it was our objective to encourage the growth of the sport in South East Asia and with the number of international standard triathlon events on the rise it’s only natural that the sport will continue to grow in this part of the world.”
In its twelfth year, the event, sponsored by Thai Airways International, the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Herbalife International (Thailand) Limited, Bangkok Hospital Phuket, Siam Commercial Bank, Singha Beer and Water, Coca Cola, M-Sport, Zoot Sports and Rising Sun continues to attract the world’s elite professional athletes who enjoy the local hospitality and tropical beauty of Phuket. The professional athletes will compete for a prize purse of US$20,000 awarded to the top five male and female pros. The 2005 Laguna Phuket pro line up includes:
Craig Alexander (AUS): 1st 2004 & 2002 Laguna Phuket Triathlon; 1st 2005 Life Time Fitness Triathlon; 1st 5430 Long Course Triathlon; 1st Australian Sprint Championships
Greg Bennett (AUS): 2006 Commonwealth Games team; 4th Athens Olympic Games; participated in 11 World Championships
Terenzo Bozzone (NZL): 3rd 2005 Wildflower Half Ironman; 4th 2005 Honolulu World Cup; 2004 New Zealand Triathlon Junior Mens Champion; 2-time World Junior Triathlon Champion; 2-time World Junior Duathlon Champion
Carol Montgomery (CAN): 2003 & 2002 Laguna Phuket Triathlon Champion; 2000 & 2004 Olympian; 2002 Commonwealth Games gold medalist
Laura Bennett (USA): 3rd 2005 World Triathlon Championships, Japan; 2004 Athens Olympic team; USA National Title; 2nd World Championships; 2nd World Series
Samantha McGlone (CAN): 1st 2005 Wildflower Half Ironman; 1st 2005 Half Ironman California; 9th International Triathlon Union World Ranking
Baht 10,000 will be paid to the first Thai male and female athletes to cross the finish line, while 25 top age group athletes will receive qualifying slots into the 2006 Ironman Australia Triathlon. Trophies will be awarded to the top three finishers in each age category and all race finishers at Laguna Phuket, including relay teams and fun runners, will receive medals upon crossing the finish line.
For online registration or further information and updates, please visit www.lagunaphukettriathlon.com,