IRONMAN Announces New Swim Start Times and Format For IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship

July 5th, 2017

Age-group rolling wave swim start to spread athletes out and decrease bike course density at 2017 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Chattanooga, Tennessee

TAMPA, Fla. (July 5, 2017) – IRONMAN, a Wanda Sports Holdings Company, announced today that the 2017 IRONMAN® 70.3® World Championship triathlon taking place in Chattanooga, Tennessee will move to a rolling wave start within each age group. The decision to change the swim-start aims to create a more fair World Championship experience for athletes by spreading athletes out and minimizing bike course density. Significant analytics research of past participant data went into the formatting decision for the swim start and was an important factor in deciding when each age group would start. Another objective of the adjusted swim start times is to deliver a safe event while providing a World Championship experience for all athletes.

“The execution of the swim start is critical in the management of bike course drafting. The adjusted swim starts will help to ensure as fair of a race as possible for age-group athletes,” said Andrew Messick, Chief Executive Officer of IRONMAN. “We know how important world championship events are for our athletes and this decision is a direct response to the feedback we have received. By spacing out the start times in the sequence that has been determined, the athlete field will be more evenly spread throughout the course and subsequently reduce the opportunity for drafting.”

The championship race will be a two-day event with the professional and age-group women racing on Saturday, Sept. 9 and the professional and age-group men racing on Sunday, Sept. 10. On Saturday, the professional women’s field will begin with a mass start at 7:30 a.m., with the first age group women wave beginning at 7:38 a.m. Likewise, on Sunday, the men’s pro race will begin with a mass start at 7:30 a.m.and the first men’s age-group wave will begin at 7:38 a.m.

While the new format will have the men and women’s fields competing on separate days, the new start times will not change the existing cut-off standards for the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship. All athletes will be required to finish the swim in one hour, the bike in five hours and 10 minutes after start, and complete the entire course in eight hours.

“We are proud to continue to find ways of enhancing the athlete experience at our world championship events. As the top triathletes in the world, these competitors deserve the highest quality race possible,” said Diana Bertsch, Vice President of World Championship Events for IRONMAN.

The 2017 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship swim waves will have altered time gaps between the age-group waves to support fairness and a more open course.

Below are the new start times for the 2017 IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship:


  FEMALE PRO 7:30 am
1 FEMALE PC/HC 7:33 am
2 FEMALE 40-44 7:38 am
3 FEMALE 70+ 7:45 am
4 FEMALE 35-39 7:54 am
5 FEMALE 65-69 8:02 am
6 FEMALE 30-34 8:11 am
7 FEMALE 60-64 8:18 am
8 FEMALE 55-59 8:26 am
9 FEMALE 50-54 8:35 am
10 FEMALE 25-29 8:43 am
11 FEMALE 18-24 8:49 am
12 FEMALE 45-49 8:58 am


  MALE PRO 7:30 am
1 MALE PC/HC 7:33 am
2 MALE 40-44 7:38 am
3 MALE 70+ 7:50 am
4 MALE 35-39 8:00 am
5 MALE 65-69 8:12 am
6 MALE 30-34 8:22 am
7 MALE 60-64 8:33 am
8 MALE 55-59 8:42 am
9 MALE 50-54 8:52 am
10 MALE 25-29 9:04 am
11 MALE 18-24 9:13 am
12 MALE 45-49 9:23 am

For more information on the IRONMAN brand and global event series, visit  For more information about the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship, please visit Media may contact


A Wanda Sports Holdings company, IRONMAN operates a global portfolio of events that includes the IRONMAN® Triathlon Series, the IRONMAN® 70.3® Triathlon Series, 5150™ Triathlon Series, the Rock n’ Roll Marathon Series®, Iron Girl®, IRONKIDS®, International Triathlon Union World Triathlon Series races, road cycling events including the UCI Velothon Majors Series, mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, premier marathons including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon and other multisport races. IRONMAN’s events, together with all other Wanda Sports Holdings events, provide more than a million participants annually the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. The iconic IRONMAN ® Series of events is the largest participation sports platform in the world. Since the inception of the IRONMAN® brand in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines at the world’s most challenging endurance races. Beginning as a single race, IRONMAN has grown to become a global sensation with more than 200 events across 50 countries. For more information, visit

About Wanda Sports Holdings
Wanda Sports Holdings is the world’s leading sports business entity, founded to capture the opportunities in the global sports industry and to contribute to the prosperous international sports landscape – in three key areas: 1) Spectator Sports (media & marketing business), 2) Participation Sports (active lifestyle business), 3) Services (digital, production and service business). Wanda Sports Holding incorporates the international sports marketing company Infront Sports & Media, the iconic endurance brand IRONMAN, and Wanda Sports China. The headquarters are in Guangzhou, China.

Dan Berglund
Senior Manager, Public Relations

Ryan Lobato
Coordinator, Public Relations


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