Bonn It will be quite a spectacle on Sunday when triathletes take a plunge into the Rhine on the first leg of their race. Nearly 1,500 participants will swim, bike and run their way through the 29th Bonn Triathlon.
Anyone who wanted to take part in the 29th SWB Energie und Wasser Bonn Triathlon on Sunday had to be quick this year. Already at the beginning of March, the organizer, the Police Sports Club (PSV) Bonn Triathlon, announced that all individual starting spots were filled. According to PSV, nearly 1,500 participants will compete in the triathlon, which includes 3.8 kilometers of swimming in the Rhine, 60 kilometers of cycling in the Siebengebirge and 15 kilometers running on the Rhine promenade. "Late registrations are no longer possible this year", says head organizer Joachim Sommershof. No late entries will be accepted. All relay slots have also been filled since the end of April.
The reason that all the starting places are filled is mainly due to the date: Because it is a long weekend with Whitsun on Monday, the Bonn Triathlon is more attractive than ever for non-local athletes. With a day off of work on Monday, all will have an opportunity to kick up the feet and have a rest after the triathlon on Sunday.
In a departure from last year's heavy humidity, which made cycling and running difficult for the participants, the weather forecast is much more sports-friendly this time around. With an expected temperature of about 20 degrees Celsius, the triathletes will plunge from the ferry into the Rhine at Kameha Grand Hotel between 9:15 and 9:40 a.m. and complete the 3.8 kilometers swimming with the current up to the Kennedy Bridge. "The conditions are very good this year," says Sommershof, who expects fast times for swimming. He says the current will be strong and athletes will need to make sure they swim towards the shore in good time. Once again, there will be numerous canoeists to help them.
Spectators are offered some of the most spectacular sights of the triathlon when the athletes get out of the Rhine or are in transition, for example, to make their way to the particularly strenuous cycle route towards the Siebengebirge. Hopes for victory or a personal best can be shattered here - or a deficit can be made up after swimming. When the athletes return to Beuel, they have to mobilize all their strength again for the final 15 kilometer run.
If the decision is made on the banks of the Rhine in Beuel, Horst Reichel (winner 2017 and 2018) and Verena Walter (winner 2016 to 2018) will certainly be in the running again: The winners of the past years are again amongst the favorites, but also have strong competition.
For some athletes, a good ranking will also be important because the triathlon is the prelude to the Nations Cup. In addition to the Bonn triathlon, 51 participants will also compete in the new format against the Verwer en Janssen Triathlon Oud Gastel in the Netherlands (22 June) and the Hageland Power Triathlon Aarschot (14 July). A cup classification will be determined among all those who will participate in these three races. 42 men and nine women have registered for the debut of this competition.
Another new feature this year is that the PSV will no longer issue plastic bags. For reasons of environmental protection, all participants should instead bring their own sealable transport bag.
(Orig. text: Matthias Kirch, Translation: Carol Kloeppel)