IRONMAN Announces Partnership with RaceRanger to Monitor Drafting Activity at All 2024 IRONMAN Pro Series Events

February 29, 2024

– Electronic drafting detection system measures distance between two athletes on bike portion of the triathlon to help reinforce clean and fair racing

– New IRONMAN Pro Series to consist of six IRONMAN and 10 IRONMAN 70.3 triathlons around the world as well as the VinFast IRONMAN World Championship Women’s race in Nice, France and Men’s race in Kailua-Kona and the VinFast IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship race in Taupo, New Zealand; Series kicks off at Athletic Brewing IRONMAN 70.3 Oceanside on April 6, 2024

TAMPA, Fla. / WĀNAKA, New Zealand (Feb. 29, 2024) /ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – IRONMAN today announced that it has partnered with RaceRanger to utilize its electronic drafting detection technology across all IRONMAN® Pro Series events in 2024, including the VinFast IRONMAN® and IRONMAN® 70.3® World Championship women’s and men’s triathlons. The technology will give referees visibility of drafting activity and confirm when athletes are within the draft zone of another athlete.

RaceRanger is an electronic drafting detection system that is powered by Ultrawideband (UWB), Bluetooth, GPS/GNSS, and 4G/LTE technology. IRONMAN and IRONMAN® 70.3® triathlons are draft illegal competitions, meaning athletes must be separated on the bike portion of the event by more than 12-meters. The RaceRanger technology will assist referees with determining whether an athlete is within the parameters of the draft zone, helping enforce competition rules. The RaceRanger device connects to an athlete’s bicycle in two areas, the front fork and the seat post. Utilizing the sensors within the devices, a light detection system externally indicates whether an athlete is within the 12-meter drafting zone. Professional athletes will be able to see these lights to help them understand where they are relative to the drafting zone. Rear RaceRanger units also continuously record data throughout the race, including how long each athlete spends in the draft zone. This data can be accessed by referees and the race organizer after the race.

The RaceRanger devices will be placed on the bikes of all professional athletes racing in IRONMAN Pro Series events in 2024, beginning with the Athletic Brewing IRONMAN 70.3 Oceanside triathlon on April 6, 2024. The RaceRanger devices will not replace race officials, rather they will be a tool to assist referees with rules enforcement and maintaining clean and fair racing. The devices will also help athletes make more accurate in-race decisions on their bike positioning. Drafting penalties will remain a judgement call by the referees.

RaceRanger is the brainchild of ex-professional triathletes, James Elvery and Dylan McNeice who were passionate about finding an accurate and consistent way to identify drafting at triathlon races.

The RaceRanger product has been in development for several years but has gained prominence in the sport recently as the technology has become more sophisticated and accurate. IRONMAN’s Rules and Projects Coordinator, Jimmy Riccitello, has been working with the RaceRanger team since 2018, with various prototypes of the product being tested at select IRONMAN events since that time.

Jimmy Riccitello said: “After years of collaboration and testing, formalizing a partnership with RaceRanger and its team is an exciting next step. During testing at the 2023 IRONMAN Florida triathlon, we saw encouraging data from RaceRanger’s continued improvements, giving us confidence to implement the technology at the 2024 IRONMAN Pro Series races in an effort to produce an objective draft zone for our professional athletes and referees. We are also glad to have been able to work with James and team on developments that will allow us to receive and analyze robust data such as the amount of time each athlete spent within the draft zone of another athlete.”

James Elvery, Co-Founder and CEO of RaceRanger added: “After over 10 years in the making, this announcement really is a moment to be proud of for the RaceRanger team. As the largest and most iconic event series in triathlon, operating at IRONMAN triathlon events has been at the top of our list of priorities from day one and we are excited to support the 2024 IRONMAN Pro Series. It’s been a pleasure working with Jimmy Riccitello and his team since our first introductory call back in 2018. We look forward to working alongside the IRONMAN team around the world to improve the fairness of racing, and continuing to develop new functionality into the RaceRanger system.”

Matt Hanson, professional triathlete and multiple IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 winner commented: “I am really excited that IRONMAN will be partnering with RaceRanger for the IRONMAN Pro Series events this year. IRONMAN took a big step forward supporting professional racing in 2024 with the new series. This partnership is another step forward in ensuring the race results are as fair as possible. This is even more important now with a significant amount of money on the line. RaceRanger is a great tool for the athletes. It provides concrete feedback so we can know exactly how much space to give to the rider in front of us rather than hoping we are close enough to not get slotted in on, but not too close to get a penalty. It takes away some of the stress when riding in a group by giving objective measurement feedback. This should also make things much easier on the officials. At the end of the day, we all want a fair race so there is no question about the results. That is exactly what this partnership will help provide.”

Last October, IRONMAN announced the formation of the IRONMAN Pro Series consisting of six IRONMAN and 10 IRONMAN 70.3 triathlons around the world as well as the VinFast IRONMAN World Championship Women’s race in Nice, France, and Men’s race in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, and the VinFast IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship taking place in Taupo, New Zealand. The series was designed to showcase and reward the exceptional racing talent of the world’s top professional triathletes and provide broader year-round interest and intrigue through deeper pro fields, storylines, and broadcast coverage. The IRONMAN Pro Series offers an incremental $1.7 million dollars on top of individual triathlon event payouts, creating a total competitive pro prize and bonus purse of nearly $6 million dollars in the 2024 season.

To learn more about RaceRanger, visit www.raceranger.com.

To learn more about the IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 brands and the IRONMAN Pro Series, please visit www.ironman.com. Media inquiries may be directed to press@ironman.com.


About RaceRanger

RaceRanger is a world first triathlon specific technology, addressing the problem of drafting on the bike section of non-drafting triathlons. Developed in New Zealand by two former pro athletes, the system accurately measures athlete drafting distances. A following rider is shown a series of coloured lights from the rear of the bike in front, to indicate how closely they are following that rider. In draft zone 0-12m = red flashing light, last warning zone 12-14m = solid blue light, first warning zone 14-17m = solid orange light.

RaceRanger ensures a fairer standard of competition and officiating by allowing both athletes and referees to accurately view the draft distance. Beyond the indicator lights, drafting data is recorded as athletes progress around the course and can be shared with officials to help inform their activity and decisions. Referees still make all penalty decisions. RaceRanger simply provides information to remove the subjectivity around the following distance, which was previously a naked eye judgement.

Initially being used only in the pro ranks, RaceRanger’s future roadmap also leads to amateur competition use in the coming years.

For more information visit www.RaceRanger.com

About The IRONMAN Group

The IRONMAN Group 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® Running Series, IRONKIDS®, World Triathlon Championship Series, premier running events including the Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon™ and City2Surf®, UTMB® World Series trail-running events including the Canyons Endurance Runs™ by UTMB®, Tarawera Ultra™ by UTMB® and Ultra-Trail Australia™ by UTMB®, Epic Series™ mountain bike races including the Absa Cape Epic®, road cycling events, and other multisport races. The IRONMAN Group is the largest operator of mass participation sports in the world, providing participants the benefits of endurance sports through the company’s vast offerings. Catering to the full athlete experience, the company portfolio also includes FulGaz® virtual cycling, the most realistic indoor riding experience connected fitness application aimed at preparing athletes for real-world events. Since the inception of the iconic IRONMAN® brand and its first event in 1978, athletes have proven that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE® by crossing finish lines around the world. Beginning as a single race, The IRONMAN Group has grown to become a global sensation with hundreds of events across 55+ countries. The IRONMAN Group is owned by Advance, a private, family-owned business, and Orkila Capital, a growth equity firm focused on building great brands. For more information, visit www.ironman.com/about-ironman-group.

About Advance 

Advance is a private, family-held business that owns and invests in companies across media, entertainment, technology, communications, education and other promising growth sectors. Our mission is to build the value of our companies over the long-term by fostering growth and innovation. Advance’s portfolio includes Condé Nast, Advance Local, Stage Entertainment, The IRONMAN Group, American City Business Journals, Leaders Group, Turnitin, and Pop. Together these operating companies employ more than 14,000 people in 29 countries. Advance is also among the largest shareholders in Charter Communications, Warner Bros. Discovery and Reddit. For more information visit www.advance.com.