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The invitation-only, multi-day event will see 20 top pros competing for a $500,000 prize purse in the Bahamas this weekend.
Three days. 20 top pros. A $500,000 prize purse. This weekend’s invite-only multi-day event in the Bahamas’ Highbourne Cay will be undoubtedly be one of the most exciting races of the year.
Starting Friday, the exclusive Island House Invitational will feature one of the densest-talent fields of 20 pro triathletes racing over the course of three days on a secluded island in the Bahamas. The inaugural event, which originated from a conversation between endurance sports enthusiast and sponsor Mark Holowesko and pro couple Luke McKenzie and Beth Gerdes, takes place Friday to Sunday around Highbourne Cay, a small island near Nassau.
Because the island holds a limited amount of people—and to make it a true invitational format—only 10 athletes of each gender were invited to compete for the $500,000 prize purse, which will pay through the entire field (10 deep).
Similar to a cycling race, the winners of the overall event will be the top general classification athletes, with total times taken from all three events. The race formats are fast and unconventional (see below), and will make for a one-of-a-kind event. Unfortunately, you cannot spectate the race, but a film crew will be capturing footage all weekend to be packaged later in a televised event for January 2016. During race days, follow along on Twitter @islandhousetri and check back to Triathlete.com for post-race recaps.
The female field features both short- and long-course specialists, including Lauren Brandon (USA), Mirinda Carfrae (AUS), Leanda Cave (GBR), Flora Duffy (BMU), Gwen Jorgensen (USA), Rachel Joyce (GBR), Alicia Kaye (CAN), Rachel Klamer (NED), Lisa Norden (SWE) and Heather Wurtele (CAN).
The male field includes Barrett Brandon (USA), Tim Don (GBR), Cam Dye (USA), Javier Gomez (ESP), Leon Griffin (AUS), Ben Hoffman (USA), Luke McKenzie (AUS), Richard Murray (RSA), Tim O’Donnell (USA) and Trevor Wurtele (CAN).
Originally Aaron Royle (AUS) and Nicole Spirig (SUI) were set to race, but due to injury, they will both be focused on getting healthy going into Olympic bids for 2016.
Here’s how each day will work:
Friday: Individual time trial prologue
Starting at 4:00 p.m., athletes will start 60 seconds apart and complete each leg against the clock, with breaks in between.
Saturday: Enduro draft-legal sprint x3
Saturday morning in a separate women’s and men’s race, athletes will go through the swim-bike-run format three times in succession, and at the completion of each stage, leaders of the general classification will be awarded.
500m swim, 13.3k bike 3.3k run
Sunday: Non-draft sprint
The general classification leaders will get sent off first, with everyone to follow starting behind based on their deficit to the leader.
750m swim, 20k bike, 5k run
Visit Islandhousetriathlon.com for more info.