Ironman Triathlon Coming to Dorchester County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Ironman Triathlon Coming to Dorchester County

CAMBRIDGE, Md.- Competitive races in Cambridge are nothing new to Dorchester County.  Eagleman and Chesapeakeman have both taken place there over the past several years.  But just a few months ago, the future of those races was in doubt, according to Gerry Boyle, the race director for both events.

"The company I was working for, Tricolumbia, who were the event sponsors for Eagleman came into some financial difficulties and it was determined that they were no longer viable," said Boyle.

But instead, the company that runs the Ironman competitions stepped in, and with help from the city and the county, the Eagleman will continue as planned.  As for the Chesapeakeman, it's now a full blown Ironman race.  That's big news for Rebecca Fox, who is in the top ten percent of triathletes nationwide in her age group.

"I think it's huge for this area.  Financially it's going to bring in a lot of money, it's going to bring in a lot of athletes, and a lot of prestige.  So it's not just the distance, Chesapeakeman used to be an Ironman length race, but this being an Ironman sanctioned event, that means when you cross the finish line, you're an Ironman." said Fox.

Less than a day after the announcement, businesses are already seeing an uptick according to Dorchester County Chamber of Commerce President Deborah Divins.

"Within an hour of the press release, we had people calling our hotels booking reservations.  It's a big deal." said Divins.

But Boyle says the impact, which he believes to be in the $10 million dollar range per year, will be felt across the peninsula.

"We'll have athletes staying from Kent Island all the way down to Salisbury, and everywhere in between.  So wherever somebody goes to sleep, that's where they tend to spend their money.  So this really does have a regional impact," said Boyle.

The Ironman consists of a 112 mile bike ride, a 2.4 mile swim, and then a 26.2 mile marathon.  Registration is set to open on April 17th at noon.  Click here for the link to registration.  The race will be held September 20th and the top 30 competitors will qualify for the worldwide Ironman championship in Hawaii on October 15th.

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