The recent announcement by the City of Penticton regarding the end of it’s association with Ironman Canada will hopefully be good news for the region in general.
Next year’s triathlon, which will be part of the Challenge series of long distance triathlons, is expected to take place as part of a week long event that promises to be more inclusive and family oriented.
It appeared to us that the Ironman event, in recent years, was taking the area down a path that no longer represented South Okanagan. The event seemed to be taking more and more away from the community every year, at the same time making increasing demands on local infrastructure – that we taxpayers were expected to pay for.
It sounds like this new arrangement will allow for more of the race proceeds to remain in the local economy.
We hope that an arrangement will be made that will allow for other communities on the Ironman race circuit to share some of these benefits – after all, as much as many businesses benefit from the race, there are some who actually lose money on race day, due to road restrictions and traffic issues.
Finally, the Penticton triathlon has always been a favourite among athletes who regularly pursue the sport. We hope something as simple as a name change doesn’t alter that view, and that athletes from all over the world continue to come and enjoy this volunteer driven race in the years to come.