A landmark running and cycling event will inaugurate the North Lantau Expressway on April 20. The Timex Duathlon is expected to attract more than 600 local and international athletes to the north Lantau Expressway before it opens to vehicles later this year and closes to athletes forever. 'We are delighted to stand behind such a singular and memorable event,' said Tony Lam, area director (Central Asia) of Time Master. 'Our objective is to encourage more people to try this unique event to challenge Hong Kong's athletes in an environment which has never before been experienced.' Three courses have been designed to challenge competitors of all ages: course A is a six-kilometre run, 40 km cycle, six km run; course B is a three km run, 20 km cycle, three km run; and Course C is a three km run, 20 km cycle, 200 m run. Bernie Ryan, president of the Hong kong Triathlon Association, said he hoped the Timex Duathlon would spark tremendous interest in the territory. 'In Hong Kong, a city with over 8,000 dedicated cyclists and 30,000 active runners, the potential for 40,000 duathletes is already in place,' Ryan explained. 'It is also a great opportunity for people to participate in the opening of an expressway, which will soon become one of the city's busiest and most integral connectors.' A team from China, including top duathletes Zheng Xuefeng, Chen Bin, Zhang Lin, Liu Nannan and Yu Ting, is expected to make the trip to Hong Kong for the event, giving the locals serious competition. The North Lantau Expressway, part of the $156.4 billion Airport Core Programme, runs down the northwest coast of Lantau Island to the new airport at Chek Lap Kok. The 12 km expressway cost $7.57 billion to build and is scheduled to open to traffic in May.