The Netherlands to host newest Ironman
IRONMAN is pleased to announce the addition of the IRONMAN® Maastricht-Limburg triathlon in the Netherlands to next year’s IRONMAN European Tour – the innaugural race will be held on August 2, 2015.
The IRONMAN European Tour currently comprises 13 IRONMAN® and 23 IRONMAN® 70.3® events. Maastricht, a buzzing city of 120,000 inhabitants, gained world-wide recognition through the Maastricht Treaty which laid the foundation for today’s European Union. As hosts of the 2012 UCI Road World Championship, the city of Maastricht and the neighbouring municipalities of Sittard-Geleen and Valkenburg aan de Geul are experienced in large-scale endurance events.
The IRONMAN Maastricht-Limburg course will lead through some of the region’s most picturesque areas and will finish at the market in the city center of Maastricht. The 3.8 kilometres swim course will take place in the Maas river followed by a beautiful yet challenging 180.2 kilometres bike course and a 42.2 kilometre marathon run around Maastricht and the “Sports Zone” of Sittard-Geleen.
“We are absolutely thrilled to bring IRONMAN to the Province of Limburg. The Maastricht region and IRONMAN are a perfect fit and we look forward to a great race that will challenge professional athletes and age-groupers alike,” said Thomas Dieckhoff, CEO for IRONMAN Europe, Middle East and Africa.
“Known for a history of cycling events – especially the famous Amstel Gold Race first held in 1966 – Limburg offers everything a triathlete desires. The swim course has fantastic spectator viewing areas, beautiful scenery, perfect infrastructure, and a bike course that traverses the famous Cauberg Hill, for being part of five cycling World Championships, two Tour de France stages and the annual Amstel Gold Race.”
IRONMAN® Maastricht-Limburg will be a true sports festival featuring an Iron Girl® and IRONKIDS® event as well as endurance seminars and podium discussions at the sports center of the City of Sittard. Sports clubs and schools throughout the region will be encouraged to participate in the weekend’s events.
“Bringing an event to Limburg of this magnitude will be extremely beneifical to the area as we promote sport and health as widely as possible,” said Ger Koopmans, member of the Provincial Executive with special responsibility for sport. “Along with our cycling events, IRONMAN underlines our ambitions to put Limburg on the map as a premier destination for sports.”
“We see this as an excellent investment,” said Maastricht alderman André Willems. “With an expected 1,800 competitors along with officials and spectators spending an average of four days in our region, their presence is likely to boost the local economy by over ten million euros per year. IRONMAN will create a direct benefit for the hospitality industry that will also have a trickle-down effect for scores of other businesses.”