The Multisport World Championships to be held in Townsville in August 2021 has been deferred until 2022, following a decision by the Executive Board of World Triathlon.
The 2020 Multisport World Championships, due to be hosted in Almere (The Netherlands) this September will now take place in 2021, while Ibiza (Spain) will now host the event in 2023.
IRONMAN Senior Vice President and Managing Director Oceania, Dave Beeche said that while disappointing, the World Triathlon decision to move all events forward one year is very understandable in these complex, quickly changing, and challenging times of COVID-19.
“Changing the scheduling for the Townsville event has been a very tough decision but one made in the best interest of the longevity of this wonderful event.
“The ten-day Multisport World Championships is one of the most popular and diverse events on the international calendar and we are excited to be bringing it to Australia.
“The organizing team will put all its energies into delivering an outstanding event for Townsville and the local region, the athletes, families and friends from all over the globe in 2022,” he said.
World Triathlon President and IOC Member, Marisol Casado thanked the three organising committees and their respective National Federations and local governments for their flexibility and willingness to accommodate the new dates, in order to minimize the impact that the current pandemic will have short and mid-term.
“This has not been an easy decision to take for any of us, but considering the situation of athletes around the world, many of them with not enough access to training due to lockdown, and with travel restrictions applying still to many countries, we all agreed that the best option for all was to move the events all one year.
“The local organisers in Almere, Townsville and Ibiza have been working tirelessly with our staff to continue with all the preparations, but also to look at the best option in the future. This agreement between us all will secure that we can provide an event in the next three years with the excellency and the success that we have done in previous occasions, providing the perfect scenario for athletes, friends and family to enjoy 10 days of multisport and triathlon at its best,” she said.
Miles Stewart, CEO Triathlon Australia fully supports the decision to move the dates of the Multisport World Championships.
“Given the circumstances around restricted travel and state border closures still in place within Australia, it was in the best interests of all to make this decision.
“We have a responsibility to the sport globally in minimizing any impacts to the host nations, and would like to thank all involved in this resolution. We want to ensure that our members, race directors and all stakeholders maximize the benefits of hosting a home Games, and the 2022 date provides that.
“This decision allows us to host qualification races with certainty, and to give as many of our athletes the chance to be on the Australian team in Townsville fully prepared.
“While disappointing for our athletes that had applied for Almere, we know they will rally again for 2021,” he said.
The Multisport World Championships is a 10-day event that attracts more than 8,000 triathletes, competing at the duathlon, long distance triathlon, aquathlon and cross triathlon world championship races organized together during a week-long festival, both for elite and age-group athletes.
The World Triathlon Multisport Championships made its debut in the ITU calendar in 2017 in Penticton (Canada), a successful event that was followed by Fyn (Denmark) in 2018 and Pontevedra (Spain) in 2019. In 2021 the event will travel to the city of Almere (The Netherlands), to be followed by Townsville (Australia) in 2022 and Ibiza (Spain) in 2023.