Ironman Canada has renewed their contract with the Resort Municipality of Whistler and Tourism Whistler through to 2020.
“Hosting the Subaru Ironman Canada events in Whistler has generated approximately $42 million in economic activity over the past five years. Looking ahead, even though Whistler’s economy is currently thriving, the Subaru Ironman events help us to ensure our economic resiliency in the future. The Subaru Ironman Canada events also fit with our sport culture and build on our reputation as a world class destination for events,” said Nancy Wilhelm-Morden, Mayor of Whistler in a press release.
Penticton hosted the event for 30 years but decided to shift to Challenge Penticton, starting with the 2013 race. Shortly after that announcement was made, Whistler won the right to host Subaru Ironman Canada for five years, adding Subaru Ironman 70.3 Canada in 2016.
This year Challenge Penticton was held on July 23 to make room for the International Triathlon Union World Multisport Championship Festival, held in Penticton from Aug. 18 to 27. Michael Brown, who is the ITU organizer and owner of the Challenge Penticton license which expires in 2019, previously told the Penticton Western News that if this inaugural event goes well it could potentially return to Penticton in five years.
Brown is expecting more than 3,000 athletes to participate in the world championships and a possible economic impact of $8.6 million.
Ironman Whistler was held on July 30 and had 2,900 athletes registered from 33 countries. Penticton professional triathlete Jen Annett placed second in the race. Annett is one of 12 Canadian athletes who will attempt to be on the podium in the long distance race at the ITU World Championship.