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Subaru IRONMAN Canada

I_Gran Fondo 2011_4Whistler, B.C will host IRONMAN® Canada for the second time this Sunday, July 27th. This ultra popular triathlon series is the most recognized endurance competition in the world. This event will be Canada's version of the national championships and will also serve as an official qualifier for the World Championships held every year in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.Ironman Canada

For those unfamiliar with the IRONMAN® structure athletes compete in a triathlon based competition consisting of a swimming, biking and running portion. What makes the IRONMAN® name so well known the intense courses these athletes must complete in a allotted amount of time. Many of the athletes that take part in these competitions don't complete the event due to their bodies breaking down or not finishing in the allotted amount of time.

The Course

The Whistler course will be very spectator friendly and runs throughout the Whistler Village and surrounding areas. Competitors will start the event by completing a two loop 3.8KM swim around Alta Lake. From here they will hop on their bikes and hit the road, completing a 180 KM course that involves them traveling south on the Sea to Sky highway, climbing into the Callaghan Valley and then back through Whistler  on their way north to Pemberton and then back to Whistler.

Once the bikers return to Whistler they will put on their running shoes and complete 2 laps of the famous Whistler Valley Trail system past lost lake and Green Lake before they cross the finish line in the Whistler Olympic Plaza.


There are several places to catch the athletes in action during IRONMAN® Canada. Each discipline has a suggested viewing station check them out below.

  • Swimming: Walk or Ride a bike along the Valley Trail to Rainbow Park where you can post up and watch the swimming portion. The swimming event will take place from 6:50 AM to 9:30 AM at Alta Lake. Please note there will be no vehicle access allowed at Rainbow Park.
  • Biking: The bike course passes through Whistler three times. There is a spectator viewing area on the east side of the Highway in front of Aava Hotel. The Bike event can be viewed in Whistler from 8 AM to 5 PM.
  • Running: The running course uses the Valley Trail which runs throughout Whistler. Athletes run south on the on the Valley Section that is on the east of Parking Lots 1,2,3,4. The finish line is located in the Whistler Olympic Plaza. You can catch the athletes at various points along the valley trail from 12:30 PM to 11:30 PM. The first finishers are expected to cross the finish line on at 3 PM. For this very reason Blackcomb Way will be fenced off for spectators who can cheer on the athletes as they come in.

 More Information

About 2800 participants will be taking place in this year's event. 100 spots will be made available at different age groups for the 2013 IRONMAN World Championships.

There will be a men's start at 6:50 AM followed by a women's start at 6:55 AM at Alta Lake. The first competitors are expected to cross the finish line at Blackcomb Way around 3 PM. Competitors have until 12 PM that night to reach the finish line or else they will be disqualified from the race.

For more information on this event visit the Subaru IRONMAN® Canada website.

Photo credit: Tourism Whistler / Mike Crane