The route of the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds will be the place to be this weekend as some of the finest athletes on the planet put on a show in the city.
Across the weekend (June 11-12) a range of activities for people of all ages will take place as Leeds welcomes the prestigious ITU World Triathlon Series for the first time, with the event being part of UK Sport’s National Lottery funded #EveryRoadtoRio campaign.
The main event day is Sunday (June 12), when activities start at 7am in the morning and run through to the finale in Millennium Square at 5:30pm. More than 5,000 amateur triathletes will take on the challenge throughout the morning of swimming in Roundhay Park’s Waterloo Lake before biking through Roundhay, Moortown, Meanwood, Weetwood, Headingley and Woodhouse before finishing the event with a run in the city centre.
Set off in waves across the morning, there will be regular action all along the course before it is then cleared to prepare for the turn of the professionals. The elite women’s race, featuring double world champion Gwen Jorgensen of the USA and Great Britain trio Non Stanford, Vicky Holland and Jodie Stimpson, will begin at 1pm.
They are followed at 3:45pm by the men’s race, featuring Leeds’ own homegrown stars Alistair and Jonathan Brownlee. They will be taking on their biggest rival, five-time world champion Javier Gomez of Spain, in the British athletes’ final race on home soil before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Coverage of the elite races will be broadcast live on BBC2 and worldwide.
Leader of Leeds City Council Councillor Judith Blake said:
“Everything is ready now for another fantastic event in Leeds being watched around the world. There is something for everyone to enjoy across the weekend, so we look forward to seeing lots of people enjoying themselves at Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds.
“The races on the Sunday promise to be something very special with some of the world’s finest athletes competing on our streets. It would be great to see thousands of people turning out to support them all, creating another incredible Leeds and Yorkshire atmosphere to inspire the athletes and make for an unforgettable memory.”
Jack Buckner, Chief Executive at British Triathlon, added:
“The Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds is all set to inspire the city of Leeds this weekend. The excitement within the city is tremendous and I hope the crowds come out in force to show their support to over 5,000 triathletes racing throughout the day before the world’s best provide an exciting finale to two days of triathlon action.
“Our aspiration is for this weekend to showcase triathlon to a worldwide audience and establish the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds as one of the most inspirational events on the ITU World Triathlon Series calendar.”
Crowds are expected across the route, and especially at the four event spectator zones – Roundhay Park, Victoria Gardens, Briggate and Millennium Square.
Apart from hosting the start of the races with the swim and the first transition onto bikes, Roundhay Park will also feature two big screens to enable spectators to follow all the elite action live, as well as music from Capital FM’s Capital Fan Fest.
Further up the route King Alfred’s Field in Moortown will also be a focal point of attention from 12 noon with big screen action as well as a range of inflatables and activities for young people hosted by Leeds City Council’s Breeze team. There will also be a selection of sports taster activities run by Leeds Beckett University.
A range of further activities for all ages will be taking place at several locations from Moortown into the city centre, including live music, and interactive street art by artists in partnership with Leeds Art Gallery in Headingley as the riders sweep round the corner onto Otley Road.
Details of all the activities along the route and the official spectator guide can be seen via http://leeds.triathlon.org including an interactive route map with activity zones listed.
Moving into the city centre, there will be further spectator zones on Victoria Gardens and Briggate, featuring big screens and a range of street entertainment and performances between the live race action. These include more than 200 young performers from Leeds entertaining the crowds, with special Rio Carnival-themed acts as well as balloon artists, music and giant puppets.
All of the participants on the day will get the chance to finish on the iconic blue ITU World Triathlon Series carpet finish line on Millennium Square, where two big screens will be showing all the elite race action. The grandstand on the square will be free to all spectators up to 12:15pm, after which it becomes ticket-only for the elite races.
Details of Accessible viewing and facilities for disabled people including Changing Places toilets in Roundhay Park and the city centre can be seen at http://leeds.triathlon.org.
As a taster for the main event, the previous day Saturday 11 June features a family fun day in Roundhay Park with a range of beginner-friendly GO TRI events run by British Triathlon along with youth and junior events from 8am to mid-afternoon. There will also be a chance to see the superstars of the sport having a swim practice session in Waterloo Lake from 9am.
The day will feature a Capital FM Fan Fest including a giant armchair, the Brownlee Foundation Duathlon and a sports expo offering the chance to try a range of sports including cycling, rowing and table tennis.
There will also be an official City Expo running from Friday 10 June to Sunday 12 June on Millennium Square and Victoria Gardens, with exhibitors including Leeds triathlon clubs, British Cycling, British Rowing Rowability, Yorkshire Bike Bank Libraries and Ping! table tennis.
Full route details of travel advice and guidance, as well as road closures and supporting information can be seen at http://leeds.triathlon.org. A new route animation including big screen locations can also be seen at: https://youtu.be/cTW2pWNmlJI or for media to download: https://we.tl/OOp8K8VU6a
The Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds is being organised by British Triathlon, IRONMAN, Leeds City Council and the ITU.
Notes to editors
About Columbia Threadneedle Investments
Columbia Threadneedle Investments is a leading global asset management group that provides a broad range of actively managed investment strategies and solutions for individual, institutional and corporate clients around the world. With more than 2000 people including over 450 investment professionals based in North America, Europe and Asia, we manage £323 billion 1 of assets across developed and emerging market equities, fixed income, asset allocation solutions and alternatives.
Columbia Threadneedle Investments started its successful relationship with the ITU World Series in 2013 and has since become Global Financial Services Partner. www.columbiathreadneedle.com
All figures as at 31 March 2016. Columbia Threadneedle Investments is the global brand name of the Columbia and Threadneedle group of companies.
1Source: Ameriprise Financial Q1 2016 earnings release.
The Columbia Threadneedle Rankings
As a global asset manager Columbia Threadneedle Investments recognises the importance of being the best in the field, not just at home, but on a global basis. The Columbia Threadneedle Rankings are used to determine the best performing triathletes across the ITU World Triathlon Series.
The Columbia Threadneedle Rankings Leader Trophy is presented to the top male and female elite athlete at each ITU World Triathlon Series event. In 2016 the Columbia Threadneedle Rankings Leader will continue to wear the bespoke race markings and carry the colours of the Columbia Threadneedle Rankings logo on their bike rack in transition.
Launched in 2015, the Columbia Threadneedle Rankings Report identifies the trends and interesting statistics after each event throughout the season.
British Triathlon is the governing body for the sport in Great Britain. It is responsible for raising the profile and delivering elite performance for Triathlon. Triathlon is a fast growing, dynamic and modern Olympic & Paralympic sport with talented world class athletes, coaches and support staff, focused around delivering world-class events and medal winning performances. www.britishtriathlon.org
Leeds City Council is the second-largest local authority in England with a population of around 776,000. Leeds has a very proud sporting heritage and we are committed to encouraging sport as a way of promoting the city and healthy lifestyles, as well as bringing world-class events, building towards our ambition to become European Capital of Culture 2023. www.leeds.gov.uk
UK Sport is the nation’s high performance sports agency responsible for the strategic investment of National Lottery and Exchequer funding into Olympic and Paralympic sports and bringing major sporting events to the UK. www.uksport.gov.uk/events
The ITU is the world governing body for the Olympic sport of triathlon and all related MultiSport disciplines. ITU is proudly committed to supporting the development of the sport worldwide through strong relationships with continental and national federations, working with its partners to offer a balanced sport development programme from grassroots to a high performance level. www.triathlon.org
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, Iron Girl®, IRONKIDS®, six of nine International Triathlon Union World Triathlon Series races, road cycling events including the UCI Velothon Majors Series, mountain bike races, premier marathons and other multisport races. The iconic IRONMAN® Series of events is the largest participation sports platform in the world, with more than 260 events across 42 countries and over 680,000 participants annually. For more information, visit www.ironman.com.
For media enquiries please contact:
Leeds City Council press office,