Dramatic volcanic scenery and the beauty of La Geria – Lanzarote’s protected wine region -provide the backdrop for the Club La Santa IRONMAN 70.3 Lanzarote. The 6th edition of this iconic event takes place on Saturday 2 September 2017.
Traffic restriction laws for sports events have led to a last minute change of bike route, as Race Director Kenneth Gasque explained:
‘We apologise to participants for this last-minute change to the bike course, though we are excited about the new route. The route takes our athletes through some of Lanzarote’s most beautiful landscapes, including amazing volcanic scenery and the La Geria wine region. This is an ‘athlete-friendly’ course, as riders will be able to track their competitors’ progress along the way. It should be a fast, exciting race with some challenging climbs.’
Maintaining its fame as the ideal pre-Kona preparation event, the Club La Santa IRONMAN 70.3 Lanzarote kicks off at 07.30 with a one-loop 1.9 km swim course in the resort’s lagoon. The new bike course consists of one large and one smaller loop: it starts with the climbs towards Soo, through Muñique, Tiagua and La Vegueta, passing the first aid station at Los Dolores Church. This legendary monument was built in honour of the Saint, Our Lady of Dolores, at the point where she allegedly halted the lava flow during the 17th century volcanic eruptions.
Our athletes encounter a steep climb at Tinguatón then head through the mesmerising lava fields of the Los Volcanes Natural Park. A right turn onto the Wine Route takes them passed the second aid station at Bodegas Rubicon, facing further climbs as they near the turn point at Uga. The course takes them back to Club La Santa, where they turn around and head back out to Dolores via the same route. The church this time acts as the second turn point, sending the athletes back towards Club La Santa stadium into T2.
The final half marathon remains unchanged through the fishing village of La Santa, finalising amidst the warm support of spectators at the Club La Santa Stadium.
The fight for the podium promises suspense: 2016 vice-champion, Kenneth Vandendriessche (BEL) will surely want to better his last result, though he will face late entry James Cunnama (ZAF), fresh from an impression victory at IRONMAN Hamburg a few weeks ago, and husband of our 2014 female winner Jodie Swallow. Spanish 2015 mid-distance champion, Emilio Aguayo, debuts at half IRONMAN distance in Lanzarote, after an excellent season so far, and could be one to watch.
IRONMAN Lanzarote 2017 winner Lucy Charles (GBR) is firm favourite for the its sibling event, having taken the world by storm since turning professional only last year. Taking her on will be Alexandra Tondeur (BEL), Jenny Schultz (DEN), Anne Haug (GER) and the best Spanish athlete in the field Anna Noguera, who already has a string of national victories to her credit this season.
The Club La Santa IRONMAN 70.3 Lanzarote is co-organised by the Cabildo de Lanzarote, and offers 50 qualifying slots for the 2018 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships in South Africa.