During the Triathlon festival Fyn 2017, we – in close connection with the athletes – tested the WCH-courses. We were generally satisfied with the courses, however, the test event left us with the desire to implement some changes, which we have been working on since.
We want to eliminate the need for shuttle transportation of bikes and athletes between Middelfart and Odense and provide the best possible conditions for spectators. We also want to ensure maximum safety for the athletes and make sure everyone gets the best possible World Championships experience.
To reach that goal, we have decided to alter the World Championship routes to the following:
- WC Long Distance Triathlon will no longer start in Middelfart but in Odense Harbor. The bike course will be located in and around Odense City instead.
- As WC Aquabike is held along with and on the same routes as WC Long Distance Triathlon, the swim start is also located in Odense Harbor and the bike course in and around Odense City.
- WC Aquatlon will no longer start in Odense City. Both the swim and run course will now be located in Middelfart.
The above concerns both WC and Open Race.
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Why have the courses been altered?
We altered the courses in the light of the experiences we gathered during last summer’s Triathlon Festival Fyn. The plan was to race on the same courses during the World Championships but we saw the opportunity to optimize athlete safety, logistics and the overall race experience by implementing these changes, which we have worked on since last year.
How will the course alteration ensure a better experience for the athletes and spectators?
The athletes will race on less busy roads with better opportunities of closing off traffic, which increase the safety. We need to remember that the number of contestants participating in the World Championships is far greater than last year, which requires additional security measures on the courses. Furthermore, the athletes will race on a looped course. This way the spectators will have the opportunity to see more of the athletes in action. To put it simply: Everything becomes much easier for both athletes and spectators with start and finish in the same city.
What about athletes who have already booked hotel etc.?
We have reached out to those who – to the best of our knowledge – will be affected by the change. They will be compensated for potential economic losses the change may entail and we will do our best to assist them in finding alternative accommodation.
Shouldn’t these changes have been announced before the opening of registration?
One cannot underestimate the size of the upcoming World Championships Festival. With the ITU behind us, several partners and stakeholders involved, these changes take a lot of time. But everyone has supported us in the decision to make the course changes we deemed necessary to ensure that Fyn 2018 ITU Multisport World Championships Festival will be one of the greatest events this year.