Ironman Wales 2021 event cancelled over Covid-19 concerns
Uncertainties over future Covid restrictions have forced organisers to cancel this year’s Ironman Wales event.
The decision to call off the world-famous triathlon was made after meetings with Pembrokeshire County Council and a recommendation against holding this year’s race.
Uncertainty over future COVID-19 restrictions and the large crowds that the competition attracts to the walled town of Tenby were the main reasons for the decision.
A statement by Ironman Wales says:
“After careful evaluation of the recent government announcement in Wales we have been working closely with Pembrokeshire County Council to find a way forward for this year’s event.
“Uncertainties around moving to Alert Level 0 in Wales, the current epidemiological infection rate and the unique event site at Tenby and Pembrokeshire as well as large crowds expected to gather on race day were discussed in a meeting with local authorities.
“Due to the unique race site in Tenby, the recommendation has been made not to support the host agreement for this year and to reschedule the event to 2022. While we were hoping otherwise, we respect the Council’s position and will follow its recommendation to reschedule the event to 2022.
“So, it is with a heavy heart that we announce today that IRONMAN Wales will return on September 11, 2022.”
It’s the second time that Covid-19 restrictions have caused the cancellation of the event with 2019 being the last time the race was staged.
Last week the Welsh Government set August 7th as the target date for moving to alert level zero when most coronavirus restrictions are lifted but this will only happen if cases continue to remain low.
Despite this year’s disappointment, the Tenby triathlon recently established itself as a Welsh sporting fixture with a five-year deal agreed with Pembrokeshire County Council.
Branded as ‘Ironman Wales Pembrokeshire/Ironman Cymru Sir Benfro’, the council said the event has become a global brand that helps to promote Pembrokeshire.
The organisers say that despite this year’s disappointment they are excited about the long-term future of the event:
“Despite the joint disappointment of not being able to host the race in 2021, we are pleased to share that a new five-year host venue agreement has been reached with Pembrokeshire County Council to ensure that Ironman Wales will happen annually in Tenby until 2026.
“We acknowledge that this latest shift is not the news any of us wanted to receive but we remain just as focused on creating an exceptional race in the future.”
The Tenby event is part of the Ironman World Series of the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) and involves swimming 2.4 miles, cycling 112 miles and then running 26.2 miles.