UPDATE 1PM: More than 1500 competitors and thousands of visitors are expected to descend on Mooloolaba for the inaugural Ironman 70.3 in September.
It will be the first Ironman event for the region, Tourism Minister Jann Stuckey said.
"It complements a series of popular triathlon competitions across the State including the successful Noosa Triathlon Multi-Sport Festival, Mooloolaba Triathlon and Cairns Airport Adventure Festival including Ironman Cairns.
"Securing major events like this demonstrates Queensland's ability to host leading sporting festivals and showcases the State on a global stage," Ms Stuckey siad.
The Ironman 70.3 Series is the fastest growing triathlon series in the world, with the inaugural Sunshine Coast event joining 59 events held in 24 countries that serve as qualifiers for the Ironman World Championship 70.3.
"The inaugural Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast is expected to attract a high quality field and the Newman Government is proud to invest in events like this through Tourism and Events Queensland," she said.
The Sunshine Coast will offer an idyllic course for athletes who will swim 1.9km, cycle 90km and run 21.1km on a course with stunning beach and ocean views.
Sunshine Coast Regional Council Mayor, Mark Jamieson, welcomed the new event to Mooloolaba.
"The Sunshine Coast has a superb reputation for staging major events," Mr Jamieson said.
"We already host the hugely popular Noosa, Mooloolaba and Caloundra Triathlons along with the Sunshine Coast Marathon, and the Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast fits in seamlessly.
"We are very proud to have won this event - it is a great addition to our ever-growing portfolio of major events being held here on the Coast."
The Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast will take place on Sunday September 15, 2013.
Entries go on sale Tuesday, March 5, for Triathlon Australia members and Thursday, March 7, for general.
The Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast will offer a USD$25,000 prize purse and 40 age group qualifying slots for the 2013 Ironman World Championship 70.3.
For more information visit www.ironmansunshinecoast.com
The ocean swim consists of a one lap course that starts and finishes at The Surf Club Mooloolaba.
This course will be flat and fast, with very little incline. Competitors will journey out and back on the smooth roads of the Sunshine Coast Motorway.
After exiting transition competitors will head north on the iconic Mooloolaba Esplanade, and complete a two lap course lined with spectator support. Transition will be located at the Brisbane Road car park.
New Mooloolaba triathlon to inject millions into economy
MOOLOOLABA will host a 70.3 Ironman triathlon in September.
An official announcement will be made by council, the State Government and key tourism industry representatives today.
The event, locked in for the next three years, will inject millions into the Sunshine Coast economy, and further strengthen the region's reputation as the multisport capital of Australia.
Long-distance triathlon racing has experienced a worldwide interest surge in recent years. Ironman and half ironman events are selling out in minutes.
Noosa and Mooloolaba Olympic-distance events attract thousands of competitors each year and this event is forecast to attract some of the world's best athletes.
Cyclezone's John Carey said 70.3 Mooloolaba would be a much-anticipated event on the triathlon calendar.
"People have been talking about it being possible for a long time," Mr Carey said.
"The interest has been growing stronger among everyone - locals and interstate.
"Half Ironman is a far more achievable and attainable target for many people, as well as being a great stepping stone to full ironman distance racing. And with the 70.3 you can still enjoy the day after it, so hopefully people will come and stay for a week."
Details on course maps are likely to be released today.
In the Mooloolaba Olympic distance event athletes swim from Main Beach, ride along the motorway to Coolum, and run along the esplanade with transition at the Brisbane Rd car park for individuals and UnderWater World car park for team competitors.
GO THE EXTRA MILE
- Also known as a half-ironman, 70.3 refers to the total distance in miles (113km)
- Race consists of a 1.2-mile (1.9km) swim, a 56-mile (90km) ride, and a 13.1-mile (21.1km) run.
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