Ironman Triathlons is a long distance triathlon race organised by the World Triathlon
Corporation, also known as the WTC. The main race is located in Hawaii and the
Triathlon is broken into three sections: The first section is the 2.4 mile swim, the next
one is a 112 mile bike ride and finally it's finished with a 26 mile marathon run. The
race has to be done in that order, and has to be finished within 17 hours. The race
officially starts at 7 AM which means that the marathon has to be finished by
midnight. There are cut off times for the first two sections, for the swimming section
it is 2 hours and 20 minutes, and the bike cut off time is 5:30PM.
The first Ironman Triathlon, and the name, spawned from an argument between John
Collins and his wife Judy, who were arguing who were the more fitter athletes,
Swimmers, runners or ones in other events. They came up with the proposal of
combining three races together to complete one right after the other. These were the
the Waikiki Roughwater Swim, then the the Around-Oahu Bike Race and the
Honolulu Marathon, with the proclamation 鈥渨 hoever finishes first we'll call them
the Ironman 鈥? The first event was held on February 18th 1978 where only 15 men
entered the race, with 12 completing the race, with the first Ironman going by the
name of Gordan Haller. His winning time was 11 hours, 46 minutes and 58 seconds.
Over the course of the year news about the Ironman spread which generated
additional interest, so much that about 50 athletes signed up to compete in the next
years race. It was postponed by a day, though, due to poor weather conditions - so
again only 15 competitors competed. This time Tom Warren was that years Ironman,
taking 11 hours, 15 minutes and 56 seconds and the first Ironwoman was a cyclist
from Boston called Lyn Lemaire, who finished 5th over all. Just as Collins was
thinking about changing the layout of the race (maybe to a relay) to get more
participants for the race, it was featured in a sports illustrated which generates a buzz
of hundreds of inquiries over the race.
The next year it was filmed by ABC's Wide World of Sports with permission from
Collins, who even stated that "Watching the race is about as exciting as watching a
lawn-growing contest." but that didn't matter as it brought the Ironman triathlon to a
worldwide audience. This time 106 men and women competed in the event. Dave
Scott won this this time and Robin Beck won the women's version. Thanks to the
popularity of the Ironman triathlon other triathlons started to appear all over the world.
The Ironman has been going strong year after year ever since then and has generated
so much interest; now that there are qualifiers all over the world to enter the main and
final race of the year, in the place where the race started .So if you are a competitor
who wanted to train, or just want to be a spectator, book early - as all the Hawaii
rentals, hotels and villas will be well booked before you know it.
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