Queen City all set to welcome Ironman | Inquirer Sports

Queen City all set to welcome Ironman

11:25 AM August 10, 2015

Can the Queen City of the South rise to the challenge?

This was the ques­tion posed by some quar­ters when or­ga­niz­ers of ex­treme sport event Iron­man 70.3 Philip­pines first an­nounced that it would be hold­ing the an­nual event in Cebu back in 2012. Not to dis­ap­point, Cebu has proven in­deed to be a prime lo­ca­tion, best suited to en­sure the con­tin­ued suc­cess of the big­gest sports event in the coun­try to date.

Event or­ga­nizer Princess Galura ad­mit­ted that the lo­ca­tion does play a cru­cial role in the over­all suc­cess of the event, and thus it pays to choose a site that has all the nec­es­sary el­e­ments and the ca­pac­ity to han­dle such daunt­ing task.

“It is very chal­leng­ing to hold an event as big as Iron­man Philip­pines as there are many stake­hold­ers—the par­tic­i­pants, the spon­sors, the ex­hibitors, the lo­cal gov­ern­ment units (LGUs), dif­fer­ent agen­cies such as the Philip­pine Na­tional Po­lice and Depart­ment of Tourism, ho­tels, air­lines, air­ports. There are a lot of mov­ing parts plus, of course, the weather,” Galura ex­plained.

Ac­cord­ing to Galura, Cebu has all the needed elements pres­ent—from the in­fra­struc­ture, cru­cial in­sti­tu­tions, lo­gis­tics, tech­nol­ogy, and even man­power to make the event a com­plete suc­cess.

“Cebu has the mix of ur­ban and ru­ral beach, al­low­ing one to have and ex­pe­ri­ence the best of both worlds. It has the infras­truc­ture—ho­tel, air­port, flights, types of air­craft—needed to sup­port the event and most impor­tantly, Cebu has the her­itage and the ex­pe­ri­ence of host­ing huge events as in the case of Sin­u­log,” Galura re­lated.

“Add to that is the fact that Cebu has the cui­sine, such as le­chon, puso, and man­goes which would all the more make the event re­ally en­joy­able not only for ath­letes but for spec­ta­tors as well. Lastly, Cebu has the friendli­est peo­ple who are hard work­ing, and fun lov­ing,” she fur­ther said.

More re­cently how­ever, Galura noted that the host­ing of the Iron­man 70.3 Philip­pines has seen some sig­nificant changes, specif­i­cally in the tech­no­log­i­cal space, which had made life for the event or­ga­niz­ers, ath­letes, even the spec­ta­tors all the more con­ve­nient.

“The Iron­man event has changed tremen­dously be­cause of the num­ber of par­tic­i­pants. Every­thing had mul­ti­plied from food, bikes, ho­tel rooms, flights, and se­cu­rity among oth­ers,” Galura re­lated.

“Tech­nol­ogy some­how played a cru­cial role—the In­ter­net in par­tic­u­lar—as it al­lowed for eas­ier and more ef­fi­cient trans­ac­tion pro­cesses. Now reg­is­tra­tion and pay­ments are made on­line. Ac­tiv­i­ties and sched­ules can also be eas­ily viewed as they are now posted on so­cial me­dia. For spec­ta­tors and the avid fol­low­ers of Iron­man, they can eas­ily view and track their fa­vored ath­lete dur­ing the race day through the ath­letes tracker app,” Galura ex­plained.

The ath­lete tracker will al­low fam­i­lies and sup­port­ers of the es­ti­mated 2,500 Iron­man triath­lete par­tic­i­pants to get real time up­dates on the race per­for­mances of their fa­vored ath­lete.

To avail of the up­dates, in­ter­ested par­ties can text TRI (space) <ath­lete num­ber> to 2600. Each SMS costs PHP 2.50 or PHP 20 for eight alerts through­out the event. Ath­lete num­bers can be searched at www.ironman703phil.com/ath­lete.

The ser­vice, which was ex­clu­sively pro­duced by mo­bile plat­form de­vel­oper Xur­pas for Globe Tele­com, is said to make the event ex­tremely ex­cit­ing even for those who can’t make it to Cebu this week­end.

Globe is again this year’s of­fi­cial tele­com part­ner of Iron­man 70.3 Philip­pines. A strong sup­porter of the event since it was lo­cally in­tro­duced in 2009, Globe will pro­vide Wi-Fi con­nec­tiv­ity and lap­tops for the me­dia cen­ter, cash sup­port, and high speed In­ter­net to the game to en­sure that or­ga­niz­ers, ath­letes, me­dia and spec­ta­tors can have a won­der­ful dig­i­tal ex­pe­ri­ence which they can share glob­ally through var­i­ous so­cial me­dia plat­forms.

“Tech­nol­ogy has in­deed made or­ga­niz­ing and work­ing for Iron­man 70.3 Philip­pines more ef­fi­cient and has­sle free,” Galura con­cluded.

TAGS: Cebu, Globe, IRONMAN, Triathlon

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