BANSKÁ ŠTIAVNICA, SLOVAKIA – XTERRA is set to unveil the newest addition to its international off-road triathlon series with the launch of XTERRA Slovakia. This premiere event is set to take place in the historically rich township of Banská Štiavnica on July 12-13, 2024.
Following its continued success in the Czech Republic, XTERRA’s expansion reinforces its dedication to deliver top-tier, off-road triathlon experiences to the vibrant triathlon community throughout Eastern Europe.
XTERRA Slovakia will feature a full weekend of racing, including Full Distance and Sprint contests catering to a wide range of athletes from elite competitors to those new to the sport. This event will also serve as a part of the newly established XTERRA 2024 Youth Tour, supporting the development of young athletes in the sport of triathlon.
This strategic move is part of XTERRA's broader vision for possible expansion into other Central and Eastern European countries, with plans to bring the sport to thriving triathlon communities in 2025 and 2026.
Slovakia, with its vibrant folklore, and UNESCO-listed sites, presents an ideal backdrop for an XTERRA race. Banská Štiavnica, selected as the event's host location, emphasizes the rich cultural heritage of Slovakia. This former mining town has transformed into a historical gem surrounded by steep hills, over 50 kilometers of marked bike trails, and numerous pristine lakes, making it a perfect setting for an XTERRA event. Triathlon boasts a significant heritage in Stiavnica, hosting Slovakia's most renowned race in Banská Štiavnica from 2012 to 2023. The original race organizers will become part of the XTERRA Slovakia team.
Doug Hall, XTERRA EMEA General Manager, expressed his enthusiasm for the new event: "We are so excited to be headed to Slovakia for the first time. This country is such an undiscovered gem of Central Europe and we're lucky to be working with a great team. Participants can expect the classic XTERRA challenge from start to finish line, so be prepared for a new cultural experience as we expand to new and exciting destinations."
The course in Banská Štiavnica promises to offer participants a unique and challenging experience. The swim will take place in an old mine filled with crystal-clear water, a setting reminiscent of the popular XTERRA Czech event. The bike segment will challenge athletes with a single loop through the mountains, featuring 900 meters of elevation gain, a mix of singletrack and faster gravel roads, and a passage through the old town. The run will consist of two loops, combining historic town roads and long stretches of singletrack above the city, with the finish line set in the town center.
Michal Piloušek, Race Director and pivotal figure in elevating XTERRA Czech, shared his vision for the XTERRA Slovakia course: "In designing the XTERRA Slovakia course, we aimed to strike a delicate balance between challenging athletes and showcasing the breathtaking beauty of Banská Štiavnica and its surroundings. Leveraging my experience from XTERRA Czech, we believe we've created a course that not only tests the competitors' limits but also allows them to immerse themselves in the rich cultural and natural heritage of the region."
Naděžda Babiaková, the mayor of Banská Štiavnica, expressed her delight: "We are so happy XTERRA chose Banská Štiavnica as the host town for the EMEA tour race. I am sure our UNESCO town can offer breathtaking architecture as well as wonderful nature. I wish we will create a long-term partnership and keep XTERRA in Stiavnica for many years."
XTERRA Slovakia will mark its debut with a strong emphasis on sustainability, preservation and community enrichment. It joins the XTERRA World Tour in July 2024 with a 2-day event on the 13th-14th of the month, anticipated to deliver intense competition and a broad array of racing options. Elites, XTERRA Youth Tour participants and amateur competitors across diverse age categories are invited to take part within the historic encapsulation of Banská Štiavnica.
For more information and to register for the event, visit the official XTERRA Slovakia event page.
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