World Triathlon Long Distance Championships Almere-Amsterdam a go with modified format

(Photo: Challenge Almere)

Due to the many world-wide COVID-19 regulations that are still in place, the organization behind Challenge Almere-Amsterdam, which is in charge of the World Triathlon Championships, announced that it has modified this year’s format. The World Triathlon Championship and World Triathlon Aquabike Championship will remain on the program for Sep. 12, 2021, but all other events disappear from the schedule. 

“After a bizarre year in which COVID-19 is still sweeping around and bringing with it strict measures worldwide, the organization behind Challenge Almere-Amsterdam has – after extensive consultation with World Triathlon and all other involved parties – decided that the 2021 World Triathlon Long Distance Championships Almere-Amsterdam will take place in an adjusted way,” organizers said in a release distributed today. 

That means the World Triathlon Sprint Duathlon Championship, the World Triathlon Standard Duathlon Championship, the World Triathlon Cross Triathlon Championship and the World Triathlon Aquathlon Championship will not take place this year. Accordingly, the festival will only take place over a period of four days instead of the usual two weeks. 

“Of course this is a very difficult decision, but at the same time the only right decision we can make,” race director Richard Belderok explains. “A ten-day event would have a huge impact on permitting, police and medical services: something that does not seem feasible in this day and age. Despite these limitations, fortunately we have now found the best possible solution.”

Besides the World Triathlon Championship and World Triathlon Aquabike Championship, the usual Challenge Almere-Amsterdam side events remain on the program. That means the Junior Challenge (Sep. 9), Rabo Business & Family Relay (Sep. 9), the Open Series Middle Distance (Sep. 10) and the Senior & No-Limit Challenge (Sep. 10) will go ahead as planned. 

“Of course it feels like our event is sized down and very much we would have liked this to be different, but at the same time we are very happy with the fact that we can still enjoy four days of a great triathlon festival,” Belderok continues. “The World Triathlon Championship is of course the absolute apotheosis of this still spectacular triathlon weekend.” 

“Even though this is not the perfect scenario for us or the Organizers, I want to express our total gratitude to the Organizers of the 2021 World Triathlon Multisport Championships Almere-Amsterdam for not giving up and find solutions so that at least the Long Distance and the Aquabike World Championships can take place as planned. And I am absolutely convinced that it will be a magnificent event for all participants,” World Triathlon President and IOC member Marisol Casado says.