Female Professionals Express Concern Over Ironman Frankfurt Start Times

In the past two days, several female professional triathletes have reached out to TriEqual to voice their concerns with the scheduled start times for this weekend’s Ironman European Regional Championship race in Frankfurt, Germany.  The professional women are to start just 2 minutes after the professional men. The first age-group wave will follow a mere 8 minutes after the professional women. This small differential is exacerbated by the fact that the race is likely to be a non-wetsuit swim for professionals, while age-groupers will be permitted to wear wetsuits.

Ruth Brennan-Morrey, winner of the 2014 Ironman 70.3 Kansas, is set to race in Frankfurt this weekend. She expressed her concern to TriEqual that the entire female professional field at one of Ironman’s marquee events, a Regional Championship race, would be compromised. Brennan-Morrey noted that not only will the stronger bike-runners among the field be negatively impacted by the “500 fast age group men charging from behind,” but the best swimmers among the female professional field will also likely “experience interference with the slower pro males in the field in the early miles on the bike and throughout the race.”

TriEqual, announced its Fair Starts Protocol earlier this year, building on its platform for fairness in triathlon to encompass promoting start protocols that allow women to race without routine interference from other competitors.