With the temperature expected to reach a maximum of 41 degrees on Sunday 2nd February for the inaugural Scody Challenge Melbourne, the heat will be on in more ways than one for the 1500 competitor strong field.
Event organisers, SuperSprint, have put together contingency plans in order to combat the heat, with the competitor health and wellbeing of critical importance during the race on Sunday.
â€˜We have been advised that temperatures could reach 39 degrees by 12 noon, therefore our concern is for any athlete that would finish after 12 noon if temperatures continue to rapidly rise,’ says Scody Challenge Melbourne Event Director, David Hansen. â€˜The full distance will remain, but after consulting Triathlon Australia, and our medical director Dr Jeanne McGivern, we are introducing a number of contingencies including a shortened distance to give all athletes the opportunity to finish, additional aid stations and drink stops, water hoses, ice and misting fans, as well as extra medical resources to be roving on course to assist any athletes who run in to hydration or heat stress issues.’
The shortened distance may take the form of a 60km bike leg and a 14km run.
Heat or not – the Scody Challenge Melbourne event is set to be one of the most exciting events of the season. The event has attracted a very competitive international field including â€“ Caroline Steffen (SUI) holder of the second fastest female Ironman time ever and Challenge Roth 2013 champion. She is joined by current Ironman Australia champion, Rebecca Hoschke (AUS) fresh from her win at Challenge Forster in November and Annabel Luxford (AUS), 2nd at the recent Ironman 70.3 Asia Pacific Championships in Auckland and 3rd at Challenge Forster in 2013.
Tim Berkel (AUS) who enjoyed a string of podium finishes in 2013 and is a two-time Challenge Copenhagen champion, will start as the top seed in the male field, and is joined by upcoming Aussie stars, Joseph Lampe (AUS) and Clayton Fettell (AUS), who boasts one of the fastest swim/cycle combinations in the world.
The Scody Challenge Melbourne event will comprise a 1.9km swim, 90km cycle, and 21.1km run, together with a prize purse of over AUD$35,000 – one of the largest professional prize purses in Australia.
The Challenge Family global series of long distance triathlons is changing the face of long distance racing around the world with its focus on athlete experience. Featuring spectacular courses in iconic destinations, Challenge Family events focus on delivering the race of a lifetime to every athlete, and creating a memorable spectator experience that captures all the excitement and emotion of this inspirational sport. The Challenge Family series currently features 22 events around the world including the world’s largest long distance triathlon, Challenge Roth in Germany. Other Challenge Family races take place in Germany, Austria, Canada, UK, France, Spain, Holland, Italy, Denmark, New Zealand, Australia, Thailand, Taiwan and USA.
*Scody is the naming rights sponsor for Challenge Melbourne.