Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland triathlon series up and running again

By John Belshaw

A triathlon series which saw more than 2,000 competitors run, bike and swim their way across Northern Ireland last year, is back by popular demand.

The Decathlon Northern Ireland Triathlon Series, supported by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board and Triathlon Ireland, aims to promote the province as an attractive tourist destination.

The six races take place across counties Antrim, Armagh, Down and Tyrone during June, July and August, using naturally beautiful locations to showcase the Northern Ireland countryside to the rest of the world through a series of pictures and films.

Crooked Lake in Camlough, Co Armagh will once again host the first event on June 11 with the Spar Causeway Coast Triathlon a week later on June 19 and the Big Splash Triathlon in Portglenone, Co Antrim on July 23.

The Mournes will play host to Top of the Mourne Triathlon in Rostrevor, Co Down on July 30 with the final two races in August - Tri the Lough Triathlon in Loughmacrory near Omagh, Co Tyrone on August 13 and the Half Ireman in Groomsport, Co Down on August 21.

Ben Sandham from title sponsors Decathlon said: "Decathlon is delighted to sponsor once again Northern Ireland's only triathlon series which has been a fantastic success in promoting community involvement and a healthy lifestyle."

Alan Clarke, Chief Executive of the NITB said: "Popular events such as the Triathlon Series are very important in attracting domestic and international visitors to spend time in Northern Ireland."

Triathlon Ireland CEO Matt McKerrow said: "Each of the triathlons cover different distances to suit all abilities from the first-timer to the experienced triathlete. From the 750m swim, 20k bike and 5k run in the Crooked Lake triathlon to the ultimate test of fitness of 3.8k swim, 180k bike and 42k run for the Ireman competition, I would encourage anyone looking for a challenge to get involved."

The series is also supported by Sport Northern Ireland and the University of Ulster Sports Academy. Marie Curie is the charity partner for the event.

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