Challenge Wales 2022 announced as Family returns to UK market – Reuters
After a seven-year absence, the Challenge Family brand will return to the UK market in 2022, with news on Thursday that The Challenge Wales will take place on Saturday June 18.
For the Fishguard-based event in South Wales, Challenge Family has partnered with CEO Matthew Evans and his Activity Wales Events team, which will see Wales’ award-winning triathlon now carry the Challenge Wales banner.
One of the founding organizers of the first IRONMAN Wales event in Tenby, Activity Wales Events also run the hugely popular Long Course Weekend (which has now expanded globally), Mumbles Triathlon (and Duathlon), Gower Triathlon and d others throughout the season. The AWE team is therefore well versed in all aspects of the sport in the region.
Challenge Wales – The race
The 1.9km swim takes place in Fishguard Bay, which is protected by a breakwater on both sides. The two-lap swim allows swimmers to get out of the water in front of large crowds before re-entering the water for a second and final lap.
The 90km cycle begins with a steady 5km climb before a fast section to the country’s smallest town, St David’s, with its enthusiastic support from spectators. Leaving St David’s there are stunning sea views of the Atlantic Ocean before climbing up Trefin and Mathry and back to St David’s before returning to T2.
The 21.2km four-lap scenic race runs along a cobbled coastal track that includes the town breakwater with great sea views.
Is there a Pro race?
We have also confirmed with Challenge Family that the event will also include a professional field, which will no doubt be of interest to many elite UK athletes, who usually have to travel to Europe regularly on the Challenge Family circuit.
Qualification for the championship
In 2017, Challenge Family presented “The Championship”, based in the x-Bionic sphere in Samorin, Slovakia. As well as brilliant Pro races over the years – where Lucy Charles-Barclay has won three races in a row – the event also acts as the Challenge Family Age Group World “Champions”, with qualification to other Challenge Family events throughout the season. .
A top six finish in the age group at any Challenge Family event around the world can guarantee your start. With the 2022 edition taking place on May 22 this year, Challenge Wales will provide an opportunity to qualify for 2023 around a year in advance.
Samorin being easy to get to from the UK, and the event and venue being excellent – I’ve been lucky enough to have competed in all four editions so far – here’s a chance for UK athletes to qualify early at their home.
A new partnership
Matthew Evans, CEO of Activity Wales Events, said: “We are delighted to announce this latest partnership with Challenge Family. The location of the event is incredible, in that the course is scenic, yet rewarding and the support of the local community will host and grow a world class event unlike any other in the UK. The event will use a local team, local suppliers and support the local community, which has always been our strategy since our inception – something the event industry really needs after 2 years of shutdown and what we as Activity Wales Events advocate as standard.
“As a team we are incredibly proud to be bringing such a prestigious event to the UK and particularly to this part of Wales. It’s a huge statement of how triathlon has developed in the UK. Wales over the past 10 years.
“We couldn’t have asked for better partners in Matthew and his team at Activity Wales Events to re-establish Challenge Family in the UK,” said Jort Vlam, CEO of Challenge Family.
“Their strong commitment to the athlete and spectator experience, supporting the local community, and delivering spectacular events that exceed expectations are all synonymous with Challenge Family’s philosophy and commitment to triathlon. We look forward to working with them to organize our first Welsh event and showcasing this beautiful region to the world!
UK Family Challenge
Looking back, the Challenge Family brand first appeared in the UK with the Challenge Henley, which took place in 2011, 2012 and 2013.
The event then moved to Weymouth, Dorset for 2014 and 2015, when this latest edition under the Challenge family colors also hosted the ETU Challenge European Long Distance Triathlon Championships.
2022 British Triathlon Calendar
The activity in the UK apparently reflects the current global trend in sport, where there is a huge amount of event-related news, across all formats, distances and organisers.
Recent (related) news includes, for example, the Outlaw Triathlon series expanding its portfolio of middle-distance events by adding the Outlaw Half Woburn Abbey, six days before Challenge Wales on Sunday June 12. It is also the same day as the IRONMAN 70.3 Staffordshire.
More locally, the M-Dot machine added the IRONMAN 70.3 Swansea on Sunday August 7 to its UK and Ireland tour, while just a week after Challenge Wales, the Cardiff Triathlon hosted by Always Aim High, added a mid-range ‘Legend’ event. to his already busy weekend in the Welsh capital.
There are certainly plenty of options for triathlon in Wales at the moment…