Sheila McHale

Sheila McHale

Minister for Disability Services; Tourism; Culture and the Arts; Consumer Protection

    Busselton gears up for record Ironman event

    1/12/2007 9:08 AM

    Australia’s South-West is in full triathlon mode as a powerhouse field prepares for Sunday’s 4th Ironman Western Australia Triathlon in Busselton.

    Tourism Minister Sheila McHale said this year’s event was the biggest ever, with a $50,000 world record bonus helping attract record numbers of competitors to Busselton.

    “The State Government is extremely proud to host this exciting endurance event, which is why WA secured the rights to continue hosting it until at least 2009,” Ms McHale said.

    A record 998 individual competitors from more than 40 countries will take part this Sunday, including 11 past Ironman winners, all eager to break the world record and pocket $50,000.

    “The event has grown in stature since 2004 and now offers 35 qualifying places for the prestigious Hawaiian Ironman,” the Minister said.

    “Everybody enjoys the hospitality of Australia’s South-West, with its beautiful beaches and famous wineries.”

    The three-stage event incorporates a 3.8km ocean swim around the famous Busselton Jetty, 180km cycle through the Ludlow Tuart Forest National Park and a 42.2km run along Geographe Bay.

    “Ironman Western Australia Triathlon is expected to lure 1,600 visitors and competitors to WA, each staying an average of 10 nights and spending about $200 a day,” Ms McHale said.

    “The event also generates national and international media coverage, with a one-hour national program on the Nine Network and broadcasts in the United States, United Kingdom, Singapore, Japan, Malaysia and New Zealand.”

    Event director Dallas O’Brien said that after a successful start to the event in its first three years, it was establishing itself as one of the world’s great Ironman events.

    Minister's office - 9213 6900