Ironman makes certain European races “Women or Men Pro Only”

(Archive Photo: Romy Louise van Schooneveld)

With Ironman Hamburg (Germany), Ironman Klagenfurt (Austria), Ironman Nice (France) and Ironman Thun (Switzerland) turning into women or men pro only events, some of the sport’s top triathletes might need to rearrange their race calendar for 2021. Ironman has designated some races specifically to either pro men or women and also made more events “age group only,” so no pros will be able to compete at those events.

On Jun. 6 female pros will get to battle for the win and a Kona slot at Ironman Hamburg. One month later, on Jul. 4, pro women will toe the line again at Ironman Austria in Klagenfurt. Ironman Nice on Jun. 13 will be a men’s pro race, as will Ironman Thun on Jul. 11. Later in the season there will be two more split events: Ironman Finland, on Aug. 14, will likely only allow pro women to race, while on Aug. 21, at Ironman Kalmar (Sweden), only pro men will compete.

“Worthwhile for numerous reasons”

In an interview with Ironman declared split pro races are “worthwhile for several reasons.” To start with, it improves the quality of racing as the field is deeper. Besides, according to Ironman, it’s more appealing for fans to follow the events separately, rather then try to keep up with the men’s and women’s race simultaneously.