CHENNAI: After a gap of more than 20 years, India will be hosting an international triathlon event with the Triathlon Asian Cup in Chennai on Sunday. In a move to popularise the sport in the country, the Indian Triathlon Federation (ITF) is planning to host two more events in the country this year. “We are looking at organising some more competitions with the help of event management companies to attract more people to take up the sport,” N Ramachandran, CEO of ITF said.
The Asian Cup in Chennai will see more than 100 participants, including 30 international triathletes from countries like Switzerland, France, South Korea, Japan and Chile. This year, the Senior National Championship will be held simultaneously along with the event. Around 70 participants from various states, apart from those from the Services Sports Control Board (SSCB), will be in action in Chennai. The event will feature 1.5km of swimming, 40km of cycling and 10km of running one after the other.
The outside area of the INS Adyar Naval establishment will be the venue for swimming. After the swimming phase, athletes will pick up their bicycles from outside INS Adyar from the transition area and will cycle down to Kamarajar Salai, turn right on to War Memorial, proceed along Flag Staff Road, Anna Salai, Napier Bridge and then, return back to Kamarajar Salai.
The event will start at 6.15am and will end by 10am. It will be followed by the prize distribution ceremony. The Indian Coast Guard will provide life guard cover for the stages set in the sea. The Indian Navy also has come forward to assist in the initial stage. The designated roads for the event will be closed during the cycling and running phases to ensure smooth conduct of the event. Sam Wikramasinghe from Sri Lanka has been appointed as the technical delegate for the event by the Asian Triathlon Confederation. Prabhat Sharma will assist him. Pooja Charushi will be the head referee for the race while Dr KA Thiagarajan from SRMC is the medical delegate.