The Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship is staged in Nelson Mandela Bay, surrounded by tourist destinations that showcase the abundance of wild beauty indigenous to South Africa and the Eastern Cape.
The Standard Bank IRONMAN African Championship joins the ranks of the IRONMAN Championship series as the African continental Championship race.
The city of Port Elizabeth boasts features such as the Boardwalk Casino and Entertainment Complex directly across the road from Hobie Beach—always a popular destination during IRONMAN race weekend. The city also features a multitude of historic and cultural attractions, with the Eastern Cape also operating as the heart of South Africa’s motor industry.
Nelson Mandela Bay is named after the humanitarian, freedom fighter, and world icon of peace, and is located 763km east of Cape Town and 1066km from Johannesburg. Port Elizabeth is South Africa’s second oldest city and also the commercial capital of the Eastern Cape. It is situated on the South Eastern Coast of South Africa, the most southern country on the African continent. Nelson Mandela Bay is surrounded by world-class tourist destinations that showcase the abundance of wild beauty indigenous to South Africa and the Eastern Cape. This gives athletes and spectators the chance to become tourists as they get the opportunity to visit these unique locations, including its beautiful coastline. One of the area’s greatest treasures are the clean beaches and warm water, making it an ideal water sport destination.
The one-lap 3.8km swim course starts on the blue-flag Hobie Beach, heading out parallel to Shark Rock Pier turning left after 300 metres. The course then goes past Humewood Beach all the way to Kings Beach before turning and heading back towards Hobie Beach.
The new bike course takes athletes out on two laps of 90km in what is arguably the most spectacular bike course on the IRONMAN circuit. Encapsulating some of the best elements of Nelson Mandela Bay the route takes athletes along the coast, into the heart of the city, past a natural lake, through indigenous coastal fynbos nature reserves and takes athletes home with kilometres of sweeping ocean views of untouched South African coastline. Athletes can expect a lot of climbing with approximately 806m gain per lap, but will be well rewarded by the beauty of this course.
The run is a three-loop course along Marine Drive through IRONMAN South Africa’s famous crowds of 70 000+ spectators. It’s a very fast, flat route through the top gate of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University and out through the bottom gate, heading towards transition.
There are 75 qualifying slots for the IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, HI, a prize purse of US $150 000 for professional athletes and a P-4000 race for PRO athletes.