HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - IRONMAN officials announced on Tuesday, that the IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona has been canceled for the first time in its 43-year history.
As the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact events around the globe, many of the championship’s qualifying events have been postponed, not allowing athletes to qualify for the 2020 championship.
That paired with global travel restrictions and other circumstances out of their control, the IRONMAN group made the decision to cancel this year's World Championships.
“It is tough to make this decision in July, but it will provide the necessary clarity for our athletes, host cities and partners,” President & Chief Executive Officer for The IRONMAN Group Andrew Messick said in a statement. “We will endure, however, and look forward to the day when we will again assemble the greatest professional and age-group triathletes in the world and crown world champions.”
The triathlon is set to return to the Big Island in 2021, with an October 9th start date.
Athletes who qualified for the 2020 championships will be given the opportunity to compete in the 2021 or 2022 editions of the race.
The IRONMAN World Championship started in 1978 on Oahu, followed by a move to Kailua-Kona in 1981 —where the event has been held ever since.