Cebu braces for a record staging of the Cobra Ironman 70.3 Asia-Pacific Championship in terms of participation, prize money and visitors when the world’s premier triathlon is staged August 7 in the Queen City of the South.
The Philippines beat 42 other countries for the hosting rights of the event with the organizing Sunrise Events Inc. (SEI) guaranteeing a successful staging of the championship that will not only feature the world’s leading and rising triathletes but also thousands of tourists from all over.
Through president/chairman Wilfred Uytengsu, SEI has impressed Ironman Asia-Pacific over the past five years of its conduct of Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines, thus earning the right to stage the championship last year and making the Philippines the first Asian country to host the blue-ribbon event.
Moreover, Cebu’s world-class infrastructure, accessibility, rich culture, travel spots and its hospitality have made it even more a qualified venue to stage international events in Ironman Asia-Pacific scale.
Geoff Meyer, CEO of Ironman Asia-Pacific, said in last year’s launch of the event in Shangri-La Mactan that the Philippines has always been the first choice to host the premier event, citing SEI’s remarkable success of staging the Philippine Ironman over the past five years, topping the number of contenders while providing the quality of race experience year after year.
The coming As-Pac Championship is expected to draw tens of thousands of triathletes from around the region. The Ironman team has also gave assurance of a more challenging, if not grueling, championship course against the city’s sceneries that have captured the hearts of the triathlon community and travelers.
In fact, the island has been included in the 2015 Condé Nast Traveler Magazine’s Top 20 Best Islands in the World – voted for its best white-sand beaches and shopping experience. Lonely Planet has also recognized Cebu as a travel destination mainly because of its cultural heritage, exciting party scene, and emerging food spots.
Still, focus will be on the As-Pac Championship which is expected to draw the best and the worst from the competing field with a tough, challenging course being set up for the event.