INTERNATIONAL TRIATHLETES DEFY UK ANTI TRAVEL ADVISORY FOR WATAMU EVENT
(Posted 30th March 2015)
The ‘Season Opener’ for Kenya’s triathlon calendar will be held in Watamu / Kilifi county at the Kenya coast on 18th and 19th of April and over 200 local and international athletes have already signed up for the event.
The various races will be held over two days beginning with a children’s aquathon on 18th of April that will see participants aged five to fifteen years run and swim over various distances. The children’s aquathon seeks to bolster the development of triathlon at grade school level across Kenya. The Sprint and Olympic distance events will take place on 19th April with participants starting with a 1.5Km swim, a 40Km cycling and finishing off with a 10Km run for the Olympic distance. The Sprint distance will see competitors battle over a 750m swim, a 20Km cycling and a 5Km run around the picturesque Watamu bay area.
H&A Sports CEO Aida Rajab commented: ‘The race is now in its sixth year and has grown in stature and 2015 will be the most competitive in its history’. She further added that the race will include an ocean swim with a flat bike course along Turtle Bay Road and a run course through Watamu Town.
Race director and Ironman competitor Falgun Bhojak also added his voice when he was quoted: ‘This year’s course has been modified and the distances and terrain will cater for all participants from professional athletes, first-timers and children’. He added that this year’s lineup will include three time winner and Kenya international Swaleh Balala, two time runner up Michael Owora, Mohammed Tarmal and Sharifa Ingosi who will lead the women’s pack.
A local resident of Watamu but citizen of the UK, whom this correspondent met during a recent visit to the Watamu area, could not help himself in writing to this correspondent: ‘We are all in some sort of shock over the latest FCO Advice on Kenya. You saw for yourself what is going on in Watamu and our ‘WATAMU WOW’ campaign is doing well. Anyone who wants to visit Watamu should do so without fear. I live here and we don’t look over our shoulders all the time or live in fear. I am sorry to say that these guys got it all wrong as far as Watamu is concerned’.
A number of foreign based athletes have confirmed their participation clearly believing local residents more than these anti-travel advisories and they can expect a warm friendly welcome from their Kenyan hosts when they arrive.
For more event information and other details of the Kenyan triathlon race calendar for 2015 click on www.hnasports.co.ke