How numbers shape up for Penticton's inaugural international triathlon - InfoNews

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How numbers shape up for Penticton's inaugural international triathlon

Participant numbers are in line with projections so far for the first Penticton ITU Championship Festival scheduled for Aug. 18 to 27, 2017.
April 02, 2017 - 10:30 AM

PENTICTON - Organizers say participant numbers for the International Triathlon Union Multisport weekend are on track, despite only 2,000 signed up so far for the August event.

Penticton ITU media spokesperson Holly Bird says obtaining exact numbers isn’t easy for the inaugural Penticton race, but roughly 2,000 Canadian and U.S. athletes are signed up so far. She says it’s the largest numbers on record for Canadians participating in an age group championship race.

“We are still holding true to our initial projection of 5,000 racers,” she said in an email.

The Aug. 18 to 27 race and events have attracted almost a half million dollars in public funding from provincial and municipal sources. Earlier this month, the Ministry Responsible for Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training announced a $220,000 grant for the event, calling the money “an investment.”

The City of Penticton is contributing another $250,000 from the 2017 budget, Chief Financial Officer Jim Bauer confirmed in an email. Half of that is cash, the other half in-kind.

Penticton also provided the the Multisport festival with $40,000 in 2016, which is included in the total $250,000 figure.

Bird says the elite rosters aren’t available yet but both Jeff Symonds and Jen Annett have confirmed their attendance.

Bird says the festival has been working to engage the community through a series of open houses, three of which have taken place since October, as well as trying to give businesses an opportunity to be included in Your Penticton Experience, a webpage for visiting athletes featuring Penticton and area business.

She says the festival continues to seek people to help out with home stays, as a number of athletes continue to look for accommodation.

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