Big triathlon event in 2017

The one year countdown to welcoming the world to Penticton for several days of endurance racing is officially on.

Triathlon and city officials gathered at the Penticton Lakeside Resort Saturday to talk about the ITU Multisport World Championships Festival, taking place next August.

"It brings the focus to Penticton to be the premier destination to train, to compete and for all things triathlon," said Mayor Andrew Jakubeit.

Jakubeit was joined at the press conference by Michael Brown, executive director of the World Championships, Eric Angstadt, manager of Multisport, International Triathlon Unon, and Jeff Symonds, a Penticton-raised, world-ranked professional triathlete.

Among the subjects they touched on were the event attracting upwards of 7,000 athletes, spectators and others, the economic impact on the community and what's next for Challenge Penticton.

In addition to the events including duathlon, aquathlon, cross triathlon and the long course triathlon, they are planning for a lot of auxiliary events with activities for family members and friends, said Brown.

And as well as maintaining a focus on the sport of triathlon in the community, Jakubeit said there will be an economic impact.

"It's over 10 days and top athletes from all over the world are going to be here," he said.

Symonds said people are just loving the opportunity to participate in different options and he expects the momentum to keep on building.

While Angstadt talked about launching the bid in 2015 for the inaugural world festival and why Penticton came out on top.

"The location is superb," he said. "And even if it's not a huge community, it seems like everyone is very engaged in holding a big event of this type here."

Following the inaugural event in Penticton the world championships will be in Odense, Denmark  in 2018, in Pontevedra, Spain in 2019 and they are working on 2020 now.

Those in attendance also provided information on what's next for Challenge Penticton. According to Brown, it will be a half distance event taking place on July 23, 2017.

After the question and answer period with officials, a panel of triathletes took questions from the crowd including what they are looking forward to next year, about the long course and why they decided to become triathletes.

For more information on the world championships, go here.




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