The fourth edition of the Ironman Vitoria-Gasteiz, which will take place next Sunday, July 16, will feature around twenty professional triathletes in the female category. All of them will participate in this prestigious long distance triathlon with the aim of taking the final victory and getting a place for the VinFast Ironman World Championship in Kona (Hawaii), in the case of elite triathletes who have not yet achieved it.
This historic race, which will be available on streaming Through the Ironman Now Channel, it stands out for the impressive landscapes that the triathletes will cover and for the beauty of the city of Vitoria. It is also recognized for having a route that is mostly flat. and that makes this test an ideal option for those triathlon lovers who wish to enter the Ironman distance for the first time.
This 2023 edition, which will welcome more than 1,500 triathletes from 58 different nationalities, will have an attractive line-up of professional competitors, including the Basque triathlete, Gurutze Frades, who will be one of the candidates to fight for the final victory. The Durango athlete already has a place for the World Cup in Kona after winning the Ironman in Cozumel in November last year.
Frades faces the test with great desire to compete in his land because, as he has told“it is not usual to do it at home for me and for many years family and friends have followed my sporting journey from afar. It will be special to run in Vitoria, surrounded by so many well-known people who will come to the streets of the capital of Alava on the day of the race“, has added.
Among the elite triathletes who have confirmed their presence also there are prominent names like the New Zealander Rebecca Clarke (third in the Ironman of New Zealand 2023), the German Svenja Thoes (winner of the Ironman Ireland 2023), the Dutch Els Visser (champion in the Ironman New Zealand 2023), the Belgian Alexandra Tondeur (second in the Ironman Switzerland 2022), the Swedish Sara Svensk (Ironman Barcelona 2019 champion), as well as the Biscayan Helene Alberdi, among others.
Precisely, to present the professional triathletes on Friday, July 14, a official press conference at the Villa Suso Palace in Vitoria-Gasteiz, with the presence of elite athletes and representatives of the organization of the Basque event. The authorities will also welcome the participants throughout this week that starts now.
Likewise, in the Ironman Vitoria-Gasteiz 2023 a total of one hundred places in the men’s category for those who wish to compete in the VinFast Ironman World Championship in Nice (France) which will take place on September 10. And for the VinFast Ironman World Championship in Kona (Hawaii) to be held on October 14 50 places will be allocated for women. This opportunity gives the triathletes who will participate in Vitoria the chance to compete in world-renowned events and achieve new sporting goals.
Among the thousands of male participants who will enjoy the atmosphere and the route on July 16, there are many stories behind them that encourage them to participate in this mythical event. Among them, for example, that of a sports lover named Manuel Casas, who after completing 160 marathons now he wants to take the plunge and complete his first IRONMAN.
In fact, this will be his second participation in Vitoria-Gasteiz, however, in the last edition, Casas failed to complete it after missing the cut in the section by bicycle. “The tears of my children when they saw that their father did not come out have given me the necessary strength to try again with even more hope.”, he stated.
Another incredible story among those enrolled in the test is that of the Mexican triathlete, Luis Álvarez, who at 60 years old has already participated in more than 200 Ironman and now he wants to complete one more in Vitoria, along with his compatriot and friend, Rafa Jaime, a blind athlete who summited Everest on May 22, accompanied by Álvarez, becoming the first blind Mexican to climb it.
Alvarez states that “exercise and Ironman changed my life, made me a better person, businessman and more disciplined” and explains that “after getting into this madness, I decided to do all the ones in the world, to this day I am the only person who has completed all the ones that have existed at least once ”, points.
The swimming, cycling and running segments are another of the attractions of this test, each with its outstanding characteristics. Beginning at the Ullibarri-Gamboa lake, within the Landa Provincial Park, the 3.8 kilometer circuit takes place in an environment of high ecological value for its oak forests and wetlands located, despite everything, very close to the city.
the tour by bicycle, 180 kilometers long, it runs through the beautiful landscapes of the Llanada Álava, First bordering the lake next to Landa and then continuing parallel to the Sierra de Elguea. In addition, the participants will cross small towns of great cultural and scenic interest, and will pass very close to some sections of the emblematic Camino de Santiago.
Lastly, the 42.2km of the marathon takes place through the busy streets of the center of Vitoria making a circuit of four laps through the old part of the municipality. The finish line is located in the famous Plaza España in the city center, also known as Plaza Nueva, where the arrival is epic, due to that warm welcome that the people of Vitoria offer to all the competitors.