Congress votes to no longer sanction Ironman
In an unprecedented show of solidarity, International Triathlon Union member nations unanimously passed a resolution to no longer sanction Ironman races, on Friday at the annual ITU Congress in Gamagori, Japan.
ITU’s Executive Board asked the triathlon global community to consider the recent actions by the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC) to create a separate federation to self-govern, self-insure and self-regulate the Ironman series of races.
In the wake of USA Triathlon’s decision to remove its sanction of all Ironman races, ITU stated that the WTC’s move threatens the integrity of sports’ national federations and replaces the focus of building sport participation and exposure with a revenue generating model to turn profits.
The resolution that passed unanimously was:
WHEREAS the World Triathlon Corporation (WTC – Ironman) does not recognize the International Triathlon Union (ITU) as the world-governing body for triathlon;
WHEREAS the WTC is developing property that is in conflict with ITU property (e.g., long and Olympic distance world championships, with their own set of rules);
WHEREAS the WTC has set up their won private international federation;
WHEREAS the WTC is a profit-driven organisation;
WHEREAS the WTC does not follow World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) rules;
WHEREAS the ITU requires that its members strictly follow International Olympic Committee (IOC) Charter rules, or otherwise face the possibility of being ejected from the Olympic Programme.
WHEREAS the WADA has advised ITU that confusion in the application of WADA rules within a sport threaten the execution and integrity of the WADA anti-doping control rules;
WHEREAS it is in the common interest of all ITU members that there be unity in the application of WADA anti-doping control rules in the sport, and that all members and the races they sanction recognise the ITU as the world governing body for the sport of triathlon;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT:
ITU members no sanction any event attached to the World Triathlon Corporation (Ironman)
Of particular concern to the ITU members was whether the World Anti-Doping Agency’s rules and the United States Anti-Doping Agency’s jurisdiction would apply to WTC’s sanctioned races and participating athletes.
More than 120 countries have now joined USA Triathlon in its position against the Ironman program. The International Olympic Committee and national governments have developed a set of rules and regulations to give national federations the exclusive rights to host national championships in their counties and for international federations to host world championships.
The WTC has ignored that policy by creating a world championship series for its Ironman distance race and a new series of half-Ironman distance races. This has created an unfair playing field by allowing a profit-driven company to attack the domain that has been previously reserved for a single non-profit volunteer-based governing body.