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For the first time in its five-year history the Abu Dhabi International Triathlon has sold out, with 2,400 athletes from 68 countries set to make the start on March 15.
“The huge demand for the event demonstrates a consistent rise in amateurs and elites looking for the ultimate triathlon challenge with 60 percent of racers registered from around the world and 40 percent from the UAE alone,” explained Faisal Al Sheikh, Director, Events Bureau, Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), which presents the annual event. “The number of keen triathletes flying in for the race from countries such as Russia, Portugal, the Philippines, Brazil, South Africa, Japan and Finland continues to rise which is a positive indicator of the event’s success and growth on a global scale.”
The International Triathlon Union’s (ITU) successful bid two years ago for the inclusion of triathlon in the Arab Games 2015 was a significant step for the sport in the Middle East, offering an additional opportunity to showcase the sport internationally and promote it as a gateway to active lifestyles.
“We are hoping this event will inspire more adults and children in the region to engage in the sport and encourage the international community to travel to the Emirates,” added Al Sheikh.
This year the Abu Dhabi International Triathlon features first-time entries from as far afield as Algeria, China, Ethiopia, Iceland, Norway, Peru, Trinidad & Tobago, Ukraine and Vietnam.
The event will welcome impressive professionals fields in both the long- and short-distance races.