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The World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) will be giving eight athletes the opportunity to race in the 2012 Ironman World Championship. The Kona Inspired program requires participants to submit a 90-second video explaining how they represent the Ironman mantra “anything is possible” for a chance to snag a spot to Kona.
See the complete announcement from Ironman below:
Ironman® today announced the launch of Kona Inspired, a new program that will engage the global endurance community to help determine media athletes for the Ironman World Championship. For the first time ever, and driven by the inspirational stories that have made the sport of triathlon what it is today, the search for the athletes who embody the spirit of Ironman and the mantra Anything Is Possible, will be a public, interactive process.
“The endurance community is truly one-of-a-kind – when they’re passionate about something, like participating in an Ironman event, they want to tell the world,” said Erik Vervloet, Chief Marketing Officer for Ironman. “Kona Inspired is an exciting opportunity to put the power in the hands of our athletes and those who are inspired by the incredible determination shown by our athletes; they know better than anyone the sacrifices it takes to become an Ironman. Our participants have to be willing to push beyond their limits, overcoming every obstacle to achieve the unachievable.”
In the new Kona Inspired program, the global endurance community will have the opportunity to upload a 90-second video showing how they represent the Ironman mantra “Anything Is Possible”, and the online community will view, share and vote on the inspirational videos submitted. Anyone with access to the internet – triathletes and spectators alike – can participate in the energy of the Ironman World Championship and the journey that more than 80,000 athletes take each year in an attempt to make it to the starting line of the toughest event in endurance sport.
“Any person who has had the opportunity to experience the Ironman World Championship knows the magic of race day,” said Diana Bertsch, Event Director for the Ironman World Championship. “From professional athletes to age groupers, we’re continually inspired by the stories of seemingly ordinary individuals accomplishing extraordinary things by setting their sights on racing in Kona. Not only will this program unite members of the endurance community, but it will also help even more athletes live their dream of racing on the Big Island.”
Beginning today (March 1), individuals can upload their videos for viewing and voting at Konainspired.com or through the Kona Inspired Facebook App on the official Ironman Facebook Page. The submission period will last through May 31, 2012. A panel of Ironman representatives will select a group of 45 semi-finalists to be divided into three subsequent voting cycles of 15 based on several criteria, including overall online votes and views. The first of three two-week semi-finalist voting rounds will begin on June 4, 2012, during which the endurance community will select two winners from each round. The Kona Inspired voting process will end with a final wild-card round where two additional winners will be selected by Ironman representatives from the remaining semi-finalists. The eight Kona Inspired winners, two announced after each voting round on June 18, July 3, July 18 and July 20, will win coveted entries into the Ironman World Championship scheduled for Oct. 13, 2012, as well as impressive prize packages.
For a comprehensive overview of the Kona Inspired contest or to see the official rules and regulations, visit Konainspired.com.