The iconic Burj Al Arab will serve as the picturesque background for international triathlon stars and local athletes when they compete in the Ironman 70.3 Dubai this weekend.
Challengers will take to Jumeirah public beach for the fourth edition of the race on Friday morning, with more than 1,200 athletes already set to take part.
The race will start with a 1.9km swim along the beach near the Burj Al Arab before transitioning to the 90km bike course and then finally a three-loop run spanning 21.1km along the beach.
With the cycling venturing into the Arabian Dunes and consisting of a 45km flat road, it could be one of the fastest Ironman 70.3 bike courses on the circuit.
With the event offering 85 qualifying slots for the 2019 Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Nice, athletes will be keen to have a good showing.
Four of the biggest names in the field will be in action in the pro race, featuring Alistair Brownlee, Kristian Blummenfelt, Anne Haug and Holly Lawrence.
Norwegian athlete Blummenfelt, who set a new world-best time (3:29:04) for the 70.3 distance at Ironman 70.3 Bahrain on December 8 plans to race the World Championships in France later this year, as does defending Dubai champion Brownlee.
Both Blummenfelt and Brownlee are in the Emirates with the goal of having a chance of taking the Triple Crown, which includes Ironman 70.3 Dubai, the Ironman 70.3 World Championship and Ironman 70.3 Bahrain.
The prize for winning all three races is one million dollars – a feat that has been achieved by only one athlete, Daniela Ryf of Switzerland, who sealed the triple crown in 2015.
Even though Ryf will miss the race in Dubai, the race promises to be thrilling.
Last year’s champion, Anne Haug is back to defend her title after her stellar 2018 campaign that included a third-place finish in Kona.
The German will face strong competition from 2017 champion Holly Lawrence and 2018 runner-up Sarah Lewis.
WHAT: Ironman 70.3 Dubai
WHERE: Jumeirah Public Beach, Dubai
WHEN: February 1
MORE INFO: eu.ironman.com.
Know more about Sport360 Application