April 20, 2016 (Samorin, Slovakia) â€“ CHALLENGE FAMILY and x-bionicÂ® sphere has today announced a new global half distance championship triathlon event for professional and age group triathletes. (see previous article on Challenge Samorin)
Known as â€˜THE CHAMPIONSHIP‘, the event will take place at the incredible x-bionicÂ® sphere in Samorin, Slovakia on June 3, 2017. Jan Masek, CEO of x-bionicÂ® sphere has promised athletes an unforgettable experience.
â€œx-bionicÂ® sphere may be a young venue, however everyone who has visited has been astonished by its size and remarkable facilities. Covering a total area of 1,000,000 square metres, x-bionicÂ® sphere’s facilities are unparalleled anywhere in the World, catering for professional athletes and teams from twenty-seven Olympic sports disciplines, including triathlon,â€ said Masek.
â€œWe are thrilled to host The Championship and are committed to providing triathletes from across the globe with a truly unforgettable experience at x-bionicÂ® sphere. Whether it is our spectacular training facilities, incredible race course, World-class accommodation at the x-bionicÂ® hotel or some well earned down-time relaxing at the x-bionicÂ® wellness centre, athletes will soon realize that The Championship and x-bionicÂ® sphere are setting the standard for all others to follow.â€
For professional athletes, THE CHAMPIONSHIP 2017 will carry a minimum â‚¬150,000 professional prize purse. A unique professional qualifying system will see professional athletes able to qualify for THE CHAMPIONSHIP 2017 via CHALLENGE FAMILY events worldwide.
Professional athletes who finish in the top five at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, or a top three finish in the 2016 World Triathlon Series end of season rankings, 2016 ITU Long Distance Championship, 2016 Ironman World Championship or 2016 Ironman 70.3 World Championship will also receive an invite to THE CHAMPIONSHIP 2017. Challenge Samorin 2016 will carry double the qualifying slots for THE CHAMPIONSHIP 2017.
Professional athlete’s qualifying at non-CHALLENGE FAMILY events will be required to validate at a CHALLENGE FAMILY event within the qualifying period, which commences at CHALLENGE FUERTEVENTURA 2016 and concludes at CHALLENGE RIMINI 2017.
â€œAt Challenge Family we’re driven by the same thing that drives our athletes: the passion to push limits, to perform at our best and to enjoy what we do in style. The Championship embodies this and it is our goal to set the new standard in triathlon,’ said Zibi Szlufcik, CEO of CHALLENGE FAMILY.
â€œA World-class team has been assembled to deliver The Championship and, true to our commitment to inclusiveness, we are thrilled to bring together all Challenge Family events into our worldwide qualifying system and celebrate the success of Challenge Family professional and age group athletes from all four corners of the globe.â€
Age group athletes will have the opportunity to qualify with a top five age group finish at any CHALLENGE FAMILY event worldwide during the qualification period. Top 3 teams in the male, female and mixed categories in relay events will qualify for THE CHAMPIONSHIP at CHALLENGE FAMILY events.
To celebrate the elite performance of qualifying athletes but maintain CHALLENGE FAMILY‘s commitment to inclusiveness, three hundred loyalty slots are available to any age group athlete who participates in at least four CHALLENGE FAMILY events within the qualification period. Loyalty spots are awarded on a first-come-first-served basis for athletes who meet the minimum participation criteria. Loyalty slots are not dependent on an athlete’s race time or finish position at any of the minimum four CHALLENGE FAMILY events.
THE CHAMPIONSHIP comprises a 1.9km swim, 90km bike and 21.1km run and is to be an annual CHALLENGE FAMILY event. The 2017 and 2019 editions of THE CHAMPIONSHIP will be held at x-bionicÂ® sphere, with the 2018 host city to be announced shortly.
Additional information about THE CHAMPIONSHIP 2017 will be available on the website www.thechampionship2017.com. Athlete enquiries should be made via email at [email protected]. Media may contact Jessica Peter at [email protected] or Martin Simonides at [email protected].
ABOUT CHALLENGE FAMILY
TheÂ CHALLENGE FAMILYÂ series of triathlons features more than forty full and half distance races in 24 countries around the world, including the world’s largest long distance triathlon â€“Â CHALLENGE ROTHÂ in Germany. Since 2002, races throughout Europe, Australasia, Asia, North America and South America have joined Roth. Together they provide athletes with a new experience of long distance racing with a strong focus on athlete and spectator experience, giving back to the community while respecting the legacy of sport and being committed to its continued growth. For further information onÂ CHALLENGE FAMILYÂ visitÂ www.challenge-family.com.
ABOUT X-BIONICÂ© SPHERE
The x-bionicÂ® sphere represents a whole universe of sports, leisure and innovation, brought to you in partnership with the global premium sport brand X-BIONICÂ®. UnparalleledÂ inÂ the world, this unique, multifunctional complex is a haven for discerning visitors, professional athletes and teams, sports enthusiasts, families, business leaders as well as health and wellness seekers. Located in close to Bratislava and Vienna the x-bionicÂ® sphereÂ boasts some of the worldÂ´s finest sport training facilities offering professional conditions for 27 Olympic sport disciplines, including one of the most modern and largest Olympic riding centers plus top-class X-BIONICÂ® HOTEL and Congress facilities.