The IRONMAN Foundation Announces Race For Change Scholarship Program to Increase Inclusivity in the Sport of Triathlon

February 15, 2024

Professional Triathlete, Sika Henry Returns as Race For Change Ambassador

TAMPA, Fla. (February 14, 2024)/ENDURANCE SPORTSWIRE/ – The IRONMAN® Foundation announced its Race For Change Scholarship aimed to support individuals from underrepresented communities who have the desire to participate in an IRONMAN® or IRONMAN 70.3® triathlon race. Up to three Race For Change Scholarships, each valued up to $10,000 USD, will be awarded for the 2024 North American race season. Recipients will receive coaching, race entries, select triathlon and training equipment, travel, lodging, and more.

The Race For Change Scholarship was established to support those from underrepresented communities who are interested in triathlon, but may not have access. The Race for Change Scholarship invites individuals from all backgrounds, including people of color, individuals with disabilities, those from under-resourced populations, and more to apply. Applications will be accepted through Thursday, February 29, 2024. For those interested in applying, visit https://ironmanfoundation.org/raceforchange_scholarship/.

“We recognize that access and how to get started can be barriers to the sport of triathlon,” shared Shane Facteau, Chief Operating Officer of The IRONMAN Group and President of The IRONMAN Foundation. “Through the Race For Change Scholarship program we want to help remove barriers and welcome more diverse individuals into the sport as we collectively empower the next generation of great competitors, coaches, and history-makers.”

Sika Henry, the United States first Black female professional triathlete, will also return as a Race For Change ambassador in 2024. She will continue to work with The IRONMAN Foundation to identify and remove participation barriers within the sport of triathlon that impact Black and other diverse athlete groups and develop community outreach engagements in conjunction with Race For Change programming.

“I am honored to continue my role as an ambassador for the IRONMAN Foundation’s Race For Change initiative. From the launch of Race For Change relays to increasing the number of free swim lessons and bike giveaways, each year we look for ways to make the sport more accessible to underrepresented groups. I have learned from my own journey as a triathlete that cost is one of the biggest barriers to entry. Offering three $10,000 Race For Change Scholarships is a great way to offset some of the challenges that come along with entering the sport. I’m really looking forward to seeing the impact that this new program has in 2024.”

In 2020, with the mission to support diversity and inclusiveness for athletes and first-time hopefuls in the sport of triathlon and the communities where they live, train and race, The IRONMAN Foundation and The IRONMAN Group launched the Race For Change program with an initial pledge of $1 million of support. Since then, the program has evolved working to remove barriers to entry, while also creating opportunities for further inclusivity.

For more information about the Race For Change Scholarship program, its application process and The IRONMAN Foundation, visit, www.ironmanfoundation.org/.


About IRONMAN DE&I Efforts

IRONMAN® has and continues to provide a welcoming platform and environment for all, becoming synonymous with monumental achievement by athletes from around the world proving that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE®. Over IRONMAN’s 40-plus year history, the brand and its series of events have worked with and celebrated athletes of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds, from all races, religions, nationalities, and sexual orientations. Since the very first years, IRONMAN has represented breaking barriers and redefining what is possible. This legacy continues as athletes and the greater IRONMAN community have utilized the platform as a vehicle to challenge and redefine society views. The very first trailblazing Special Team of Dick and Rick Hoyt racing alongside other athletes was a pinnacle moment for what was to come. Their determination and fortitude has continued with athletes like John MacLean, Jim MacLaren, David Bailey, Carlos Moleda, Jim Howley, Scott Rigsby, Sarah Reinertsen, Rudy Tolson-Garcia, Ricky James, Turia Pitt, Minda Dentler, Team Agar, the Pease Brothers, Alex Zanardi, Rajesh Durbal, Team Liza, Lauren Parker, Roderick Sewell, and most recently Chris Nikic and Sam Holness, among so many others. These athletes and their achievements through IRONMAN have established non-profits and long-standing partnerships like the Challenged Athletes Foundation that continue to do incredible work. The vastness of the athlete community, partners and the openness that exists with its events is what makes IRONMAN special and is core to what the brand represents. Continuing the belief and importance of inclusivity, IRONMAN is committed to Women For Tri and Race For Change while working on additional avenues to further increase diversity, equity, and inclusion.

About The IRONMAN Foundation

The IRONMAN Foundation creates positive, tangible change in IRONMAN race communities by engaging athletes and volunteers to participate in programs that demonstrate service through sport and commitment to community. Since 2003, over $55,000,000 has been provided through IRONMAN charitable giveback programs, including the IRONMAN Foundation, to more than 10,000 local, regional, national, and global nonprofit initiatives. Through these partnerships, IRONMAN® Series, Rock ‘n’ Roll® Running Series, and UTMB® Series participants are powerfully linked to the community and together help leave a positive legacy behind in race communities long after event day. For more information on The IRONMAN Foundation programs, including Team IMF, Community Fund, Race For ChangeTM, Rock This Town®, and Your Journey Your Cause®, visit www.ironmanfoundation.org.

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 and provides more than a million participants annually 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 17,000 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.



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