Kelowna gets aggressive in Ironman bid
While no one from Kamloops got on a plane to make the city's pitch to host the next Ironman Canada, the city isn't worried about getting one-upped by one of its competitors.
Last week, Kelowna Mayor Walter Gray and three delegates headed to Florida to make their pitch in person for the Ironman hosting gig.
Kamloops filed its own bid electronically, Tournament Capital co-ordinator Sean Smith told KTW, and there are no plans for a similar promotional trip.
"I don't think a decision is going to be made on whether to host an event because the bid was delivered in person," he said.
A shortlist of Canadian cities being considered by Ironman organizers Word Triathlon Corporation is expected in the next few days — and the city should know by Monday if it's made it the first cut in the race to host the long-distance triathlon.
Other cities in the running include Vernon, Calgary, Victoria and Whistler.
It's those last two Smith thinks pose the toughest competition for Kamloops.
"Whistler definitely has their resort reputation going for them and it's such a well-known name that I think that is definitely an advantage for them," he said.
Victoria's athletic legacy — it has produced a number of noted triathletes, including two-time Olympic medalist Simon Whitfield — also gives it an edge.
But, Smith said, Kamloops has its own advantages, including its terrain and its own roster of Ironman competitors.
"I think just what we have to offer in the way of routes and support from our city is our strong advantage," he said.
While details of several other bidder routes have been released to the public, Kamloops is staying mum on its course plans for the moment, though Smith did say the bid presents "numerous options" for the Ironman course.
Smith said the city doesn't want to reveal the route for other communities to criticize before a decision is made.
"We don't want to give out our secrets."
Should the city succeed in its bid, it would sign a contract to host the race for the next five years.
A final decision on a new host city will be announced Oct. 10, during the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii.