Prague, 25th of July – Both triathlon stars and amateurs will meet in Prague this weekend to experience the unique FORD CHALLENGEPRAGUE race. The third edition of the race from the CHALLENGEFAMILY series will bring more than 1350 athletes from 45 countries to the centre of the Central European metropolis. The extraordinary track will lead from Střelecký island, from where the athletes will start on Saturday, 27th July.
Preparations for the FORD CHALLENGEPRAGUE take place similarly to any international event all year round, most intensely in the last month before the start. “For the past few weeks we have been on the routes almost every day to prepare traffic situations and solve details that cannot be made from the office desk,” says the director of the race Tomáš Vrzák. “During the week before the event, a coordination meeting is held at the Department of Crisis Management of the City of Prague with all affected authorities, the police, the emergency services and others, without which we would not be able to carry out the event. Preparedness, possible crisis and the last details of the cooperation are resolved.”
The organizers have only few hours to complete the construction of the facilities – the centre of the race in the surroundings of Střelecký island, Vítězná Street and Legion Bridge will be built overnight. “For us and our suppliers, this is literally a logistics exercise, mainly due to the extent and limited time available,” admits Vrzák, Ford everything to be smooth, it is necessary to install, for example, 10 kilometres of fences or 2000 pieces of traffic signs. Almost 300 volunteers, more than 200 construction engineers and security agency staff, dozens of police officers, rescuers and referees are involved in the preparations and during the race itself.
The world triathlon race will start on July 27 from Střelecký island. The centre of the race is placed on Legion Bridge with the finish at Vítězná street. There are four categories: the main race FORD CHALLENGEPRAGUE MIDDLE consists of 1.9 km of swimming, 90 km of cycling and 21.1 km running. SCOTT CHALLENGETRY-ATHLON is designed for athletes who love challenges and at the same time do not dare to compete at the full-length track – the distances at this race are shorter. The popular team race CHALLENGEPRAGUE RELAYS will not be missing as well, such as the HERVIS CHALLENGEJUNIOR, running competition for children, which will take place on Střelecký island in the afternoon on Friday, 26th July. Families with children can look forward to another sports program during the weekend.
The start list includes the World Champion and silver medallist from the last year’s edition of FORD CHALLENGEPRAGUE Pablo Dapena, winner of 2017 Pieter Heemeryck and rising star Frederic Funk. The Paralympic Rio 2016 winner Andrew Lewis will also feature in the main race. Among home stars, Lukáš Kočař, Tomáš Řenč, Petr Soukup, Petr Vabroušek, former tandem cyclist Marek Moflár or handbiker Jan Tománek will not be missing. In the women’s category, Czech star living in Australia Radka Vodičková-Kahlfeldt will compete, such as last year’s winner Katrien Verstuyft from Belgium and silver medallist from London Olympics and World Champion Lisa Nordén of Sweden.
The courses of the race are published at https://challenge-prague.com/race-information/courses/.