August 06, 2014 01:00 By Keshie Hernitaningtyas
Indonesia gets set to host the MetaMan Bintan triathlon
A triathlon race that symbolises strength and endurance will be returning for its third season to the resort island of Bintan from August 23 to 25 – this year with a total prize purse of US$134,000.
According to Singapore-based event organiser MetaSport, around 300 participants from Indonesia, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand, China and other countries around the globe have already registered to participate in MetaMan Bintan.
“With professionals such as last year’s winner, Courtney Ogden, New Zealand’s Iron Distance legend Cameron Brown and Indonesian triathlete and Olympic swimmer Andy Wibowo taking part in the half event, MetaMan Bintan is sure to provide some exciting moments,” says MetaSport managing director Nathalie Marquet.
MetaMan Bintan will provide endurance athletes with a unique race that will test their physical abilities in the competitive swim, bike and run. The favourite event remains the MetaMan Half, which consists of a 1.9-kilometre swim, a 90-km bike ride and a 21.1-km run.
The race returns this year with a full category and an all new MetaMan Blitz to cater to all triathlon enthusiasts who would like to participate.
“Triathlons can be intimidating for any newcomer. We want to encourage more enthusiasts to take up challenging endurance races and the MetaMan Blitz category allows participants to have a taste of the Iron Distance triathlons without the physical demands,” Marquet says.
“We’re so pleased to be hosting such an exciting and professional event in Indonesia, a country we’ve always found so supportive of sporting events. Both professional athletes and those who are just committed to challenging themselves will enjoy the spirit of the events – all framed by Bintan’s stunning natural beauty.”
The race will take place in the northern part of Bintan. Participants will set off from the sandy beaches of the Nirwana Gardens Resort Hotel before diving into the crystal clear waters of the South China Sea. After racers triumph over the east-west ocean currents, the swim route will bring them back to the island of Bintan where they will begin the biking segment, cycling through lush jungle alongside the calm blue sea and stunning beaches.
The marathon route will take participants down the famed Wakatobi jungle track. The soft jungle floor is ideal for such a challenging race. The track is bordered by dense trees that provide a shady respite from the sun during the last stage of the race. The final stretch is on a slight incline alongside the Mayang Sari Beach Resort, where participants make six 7-km laps through the resort grounds.
“Bintan is the perfect place to hold a triathlon. It has clear, calm sea conditions, a challenging bike course and a running course on a jungle track that is a combination of semi-trail and road,” says Indonesia’s champion triathlete Andy Wibowo.
“To race in my own country is like having an extra energy boost. Last year almost all the spectators along the run course were cheering me on. It was a wonderful feeling.”
Wibowo placed second overall in the Olympic-distance Bintan triathlon in 2013, making him the first Indonesian athlete to stand on the winners’ podium in the history of the Bintan event.
If you go
_ Bintan or Negeri Segantang Lada is an island resort in the Riau archipelago of Indonesia. Singapore is the convenient gateway to Bintang, with the ferry taking 45 minutes to reach the island resort. Find out more at www.MetaManBintan.com.