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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 October 2018

Abu Dhabi to host ITU World Triathlon Grand Final in 2022

The UAE capital has already been part of the ITU World Series since 2015 and they will now get chance to host season finale

Action from the 2018 ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi. The UAE's capital will now host the 2022 Grand Final. Reem Mohammed /  The National
Action from the 2018 ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi. The UAE's capital will now host the 2022 Grand Final. Reem Mohammed /  The National

Abu Dhabi is to play host to the 2022 ITU World Triathlon Grand Final to continue the UAE's growing relationship with the sport.

The International Triathlon Union Executive Board confirmed at its annual congress in Australia that the UAE's capital will be the location for an event that will see more than 7,000 triathletes compete.

Major General Mohammed Khalfan Al Rumaithi, chairman of the General Authority for Sports and deputy chairman of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said hosting the event would help grow interest and participation in triathlon with the public.

"Abu Dhabi is established offering world class sporting facilities and hosting world class events," he said in a news release. "But we are very happy to add another to this growing list of world class events.

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“Triathlon is a sport we want to promote among the country’s youth and staging the Grand Final will definitely help. We want to create an awareness of the sport and encourage our youth as well as to encourage participation from all communities in the country.”

The Grand Final is expected to involve 5,000 international triathletes as well as 2,500 local triathletes over five days of action.

International triathlon events have become a regular part of the calendar in recent years in Abu Dhabi.

The city held the Abu Dhabi International Triathlon between 2010 and 2014, and since 2015 has staged the ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi, which is part of the ITU World Triathlon series.

The 2018 event in March marked the fourth staging, following its move to Yas Island in 2017. The race circuit will take centre stage once again on March 8-9 when the 2019 competition is held.

Amateur participation in the event has seen impressive growth, from 1,600 in 2015, to 2,500 in 2018 - an increase of 56 per cent.

Gary Marescia, Event Director of the ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi said: “The ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi has gone from strength to strength.

“We are pleased to be able to provide something for everyone, whether beginners, seasoned amateurs, para-triathletes or professionals.

“Staging the ITU Grand Final will be a huge undertaking with Abu Dhabi playing host to so many athletes - this year’s successful bid highlights Abu Dhabi’s huge ambition to be a part of the very best sporting events."

As a Grand Final host city, Abu Dhabi will also stage the ITU's annual Congress in 2022, which takes place in the days leading up to the race.