A record for HK Ironkids
ENTRIES for this year's Canon Hong Kong Ironkids Triathlon Championships on Sunday have closed with a record 600 participants, the maximum number the course at Hong Kong Sports Institute can accommodate.
Nearly 100 more budding young triathletes have joined a waiting list.
The 470 boys and 130 girls, all between the ages of seven and 19, attended a pre-race Canon Clinic at the Sports Institute over the weekend to complete formal registration and collect their race numbers.
They also tried out the course in a special fun run and picked up tips on triathlon techniques from experienced coaches.
''More than a third of the children have never raced in a triathlon before,'' said Ironkids race director Ruth Hunt, ''although they should have been practising their individual swimming, cycling and running skills for several weeks now.'' ''Since September, coaches from the Hong Kong Triathlon Association have been visiting schools all round the territory as part of a new initiative to promote triathlon as a safe, healthy sport for young people.
''I am sure this has played a big part in achieving such a high response. More than 100 schools form all over the territory will be represented. But it also reflects a growing interest in triathlon worldwide,'' she added.
''We had already increased the capacity of the race from last year's 550, but this response beats even our best expectations. It is certainly very encouraging for the future of the sport in Hong Kong.'' Participants in the Canon Ironkids championships will compete in six male and six female age groups over three different course lengths, with the youngest racing over a 100 m swim, 4 km bike ride and 800 m run, while the oldest complete a 400 m swim, 12 km bike ride and 4 km run.