On the heels of yesterday’s announcement from Ironman that it would be expanding into the Middle East with 70.3 events in Bahrain and Dubai, the Challenge Family today revealed the date for its Triple Crown Series finale race in Bahrain. The Dec. 5 date for Ironman 70.3 Bahrain was the same date that Challenge had previously announced for Challenge Bahrain, causing speculation that Challenge Bahrain may not happen. Instead, the half-iron distance race will take place two weeks earlier on Friday, Nov. 20 and will be a night triathlon.
The swim will take place as the sun sets, with athletes competing in the dark on the bike and run on what Challenge promises will be a well-lit course. According to the press release, race organizers hope the format will “allow all finishers to enjoy the festive night-time finish line celebrations normally reserved for longer distance races.”
“We are delighted to announce Challenge Bahrain 2015 under the direction of new general manager, Mikel Calahorra,” said Challenge Family CEO Zibi Szlufcik in the press release. “We have no doubt that Challenge Bahrain will again set new standards for triathlon with its exciting night race format and we very much look forward to returning to this spectacular nation.”
While the exact prize money has not yet been announced—the press release promises a “large prize purse”—, we do know that the race will serve as the third of Challenge Family’s Triple Crown Series. If any pro male or female can win all three events in the series, they will walk away with $1 million. With Challenge Dubai already in the books, race winners Terenzo Bozzone (NZL) and Daniela Ryf (SUI) are the only remaining contenders for that prize. Though this announcement clears up the speculation about if the Bahrain race would take place, there is currently no second race for the Triple Crown on the calendar. The race was supposed to take place in Oman, but Challenge announced that it was canceling that event due to a conflict in a neighboring Arabian country. Challenge promises that a second race will be revealed at some point.
Entries to Challenge Bahrain will open on Thursday, June 11 at Challenge-bahrain.com.