After three years of operating as a full-Ironman, the St. George event will be converted to a 70.3 starting in 2013. Ever since its inception in 2009, Ironman St. George has struggled with registration numbers and is one of the only North American Ironmans to not sell out in 2012.
See the complete announcement from Ironman below:
Today, Ironman announced changes to Ironman St. George. Starting in 2013, the event will be converted to an Ironman 70.3 and will consist of a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile run.
“We’ve listened to our athletes and they’ve told us that while they love St. George — the people, the community and surroundings — St. George does not work for them as a full-distance Ironman,” said Andrew Messick, Chief Executive Officer of Ironman. “Our belief is that St. George will flourish as a 70.3 and we are pleased that we are continuing our relationship with St. George and with the state of Utah.”
The swim course will follow a shorter loop through Sand Hollow Reservoir, the bike route will lead athletes along Red Hills Parkway through the brilliant scenery of Snow Canyon State Park, and the half-marathon will take participants up Red Hills Parkway and back. The finish line will still be located at Town Square.
“We welcome this new race as a continuation of the momentum we’ve started with Ironman St. George,” said Kevin Lewis, Director of Sports Marketing with the St. George Convention and Tourism Office. “We estimate that the economic impact to our community will be similar to that of a full-distance Ironman, while the cost of hosting and the need for road closures and necessary services is reduced.”
One of nearly 60 Ironman 70.3 events worldwide, Ironman 70.3 St. George is set to take place on Saturday, May 4, 2013. Athletes will compete for a professional prize purse of $15,000 and 75 age-group qualifying slots for the 2013 Ironman World Championship 70.3 scheduled for September at Lake Las Vegas in Henderson, Nev.