(photo credit: REUTERS)
With the 11th edition of Israman Negev Eilat just one week away, the organizers revealed the design of the medals which will be handed out to each of the participants next Friday.
Over 1,600 athletes, an increase of 400 from last year, from 26 countries will take part in the many events, including the Ironman triathlon, which consists of a 3.8 kilometer swim, 180 km bike ride and a full marathon (42.2 km).
The event has gained international recognition over recent years and is considered to be one of the toughest Ironman competitions in the world.
What began in 1999 as an intimate competition with only a few dozen athletes, has grown and developed, quantitatively and qualitatively, to become one of the major international sporting events in the country.
As well as the main event, there will also be a half distance competition (swim – 1.9 km, bike – 91 km, run - 21.1 km) and a relay race in which three athletes will team up, each contesting one of the legs.
There will also be several competitions for children aged 8-15, making Israman Negev Eilat an event for the entire family.
The races will all end at a special finish line set up opposite Royal Beach Hotel, with the main competitions to last from 4.5 to 17 hours.
Petr Vabrousek of the Czech Republic is the two-time defending champion of the full event, winning the grueling contest in a time of 9:55.30 hours last year.