Pro changes at selected Ironmans

The World Triathlon Corporation announced today that selected North American Ironman and Ironman 70.3 races will feature split professional start fields starting in 2016. Split in this case meaning that some of the events will only have male pros, while others on the same dates will have only female pros.

According to the WTC, the six events selected for 2016 were chosen because they had overlapping dates, and so on July 24, 2016 female pros will race at Ironman Lake Placid, while male pros will test their mettle at Ironman Canada. September 11 and September 26 are the other dates in 2016 where there will be split professional fields.

“We are always looking for ways to improve our events. Guided by professional athlete feedback, which was shared with the Women For Tri board for further dialogue, we are taking this important step in the next progression of competitive racing,” said Andrew Messick, CEO for Ironman. “We are excited to try this pilot in 2016 and provide our female and male pros a unique racing experience, and a platform for each athlete field to shine. We hope to see an amazing professional lineup and outstanding competition at these races.”

This is not completely new for Ironman, as many years back the same thing was orchestrated under Graham Fraser at Ironman Coeur D'Alene and Lake Placid. Men raced in one city and women in the other, and then it flip-flopped the next year. That effort only lasted a few years.

Ironman Lake Placid - Female pros
Ironman CDA - Male pros

Ironman Lake Placid - Male pros
Ironman CDA - Female Pros

Ironman Lake Placid - Female pros
Ironman CDA - Male pros

The announced changes for the 2016 North American season are as follows:

All Female Professional Field

Ironman Lake Placid – July 24, 2016
Ironman Wisconsin – September 11, 2016
Ironman 70.3 Augusta – September 25, 2016

All Male Professional Field
Ironman Canada – July 24, 2016
Ironman 70.3 Santa Cruz – September 11, 2016
Ironman Chattanooga – September 25, 2016