Race your Best in Zell am See
A race preview from IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship Zell am See-Kaprun race director, Erwin Dokter.
We are looking forward to hosting the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in Zell am See-Kaprun, SalzburgerLand in 2015. It is a pleasure for me and my team to be part of one of the most important triathlon races in the world. I would like to explain the world championship race course so athletes know where to go, where to be and what to do on race day.
Race day starts for all IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship athletes at the bike exit, which is on the way to the swim start. It will be your last chance to check your bikes and to set up your bags. At the transition area, there will be bike mechanical services in case you need any last minute adjustments.
There is a direct route to the swim warm-up area at the hostel Schüttdorf for athletes only. In front of the start area is where you'll hand in your morning clothes bags. The first of the three start boxes gives you the opportunity for a last chat with your family and friends before the final whistle blows. See the map to the left for race morning details.
The IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship Zell am See-Kaprun, SalzburgerLand swim is a water start. Athletes will use the stairs which lead into the Zeller See. To ensure you can follow the course easily, buoys will be set up every 50 meters. The course leads you 935 meters straight towards the Grandhotel. There are two turning buoys set 30 meters apart. After the turnaround, you'll swim back 935 towards the swim start.
On your way, thousands of spectators will be cheering for you from the shore, providing lots of motivation. This will give you goosebumps, I promise.
For better understanding please take a close look at the course map of the swim.
While the start of the bike course for the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship seems like it should be easy, athletes need to be careful. If you push too hard during the early stages of the ride, you're likely to falter on the climb up the Hochkönig. So, as you start the ride, remember to go fast, but with as little effort as possible. Click here to see a map of the bike course.
When you attack the Hochkönig (1,280 m of climbing), you will be grateful for your initial patience. Remember to take in some food and drink at the aid station in Dienten, because you are about to tackle a 2 km climb with grades of up to 12 percent, which will separate the real contenders from the rest of the field.
Once you are through the effort, use the downhill section to relax and gain some valuable time. The descents are not difficult, but don't underestimate this section. You'll need to concentrate and use all your technical skills during this section of the course.
After about 65 km, the course heads back to the historic city of Zell am See. It might seem close, but there are still 25 km of cycling and a half marathon still to run before you are at the finish line. You'll enjoy huge crowd support, though, to keep you going.
After the turn in Piesendorf and the last aid station, you'll follow some tight curves towards Kaprun and go past the official race hotel, the TauernSpa. Once again, you'll be in for some huge crowds of supporters to motivate you before you cycle uphill towards the Kaprun castle. Use the downhill from the castle to relax and get yourself ready for the half marathon.
Both the IRONMAN 70.3 Zell am See-Kaprun and the IRONMAN 70.3 World Championship in SalzburgerLand distinguishes itself by the combination of calm moments along the lake and the crowded sections through the town center. Thousands of fans will be waiting here, cheering athletes on to get the last out of their bodies and minds.
Athletes will transition onto the run course and begin by running alongside the lake. In this section, athletes will be able to focus on themselves in order to gather energy and adjust to the upcoming kilometers. Shortly before the town of Thumersbach, they'll have to run up a small hill before they will enter the new turning point of the course.
In Thumbersbach, there will be another turning point. Here, thanks to the new route, there will be a festival atmosphere: a hot-spot with music and motivating crowds. On your way back, there will be an aid station, and after the turning point, the course goes up again, followed by a downhill sloping section towards the hospital.
The highlight of the course awaits: the section through the historical center of Zell am See. The typical Austrian downtown will be crowded with thousands of spectators, who will be frenetically cheering. The town square, where athletes will get their lap bands, will be the central point of the incredible atmosphere before athletes will run towards the finish line.
I’m looking forward to witnessing one of the biggest triathlon events in the world and I wish you all an exciting, challenging, and good race. Take care, remain fair and always keep an eye on your goal