With 9 days until race, Ironman 70.3 organizers seeking volunteers

In this 2013 file photo, finish line volunteers high-five runners as they finish Ironman 70.3, St. George, Utah, May 4, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Jamaica Hansen, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — As the first race in two years approaches, volunteers are needed for the 2021 Intermountain Healthcare Ironman 70.3 St. George North American Championship on May 1.

In this 2018 file photo, volunteers hand out ice and water at the Ironman 70.3 St. George, St. George, Utah, May 5, 2018 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

According to a press release from the Greater Zion Convention & Tourism Office, over 2,700 competitors will converge among the red rock vistas, blue sky and sunshine to compete for the North American title.

Colby Neilson, director of volunteers for the race, said it’s the volunteers who make the experience magical.

“Athletes have voted this race in the top 10 worldwide the past few years,” Neilson said in the press release, “and that has a lot to do with this community and the volunteers that make the experience great. The volunteer-to-athlete ratio is nearly one-to-one which says a lot about the spirit of volunteerism in our community.” 

Neilson said he is on a mission – as he is every year at this time – to recruit volunteers for the race.

“2021 is going to be a special year with two races scheduled,” he said. “These events are only possible because of the incredible volunteers that show up ready to serve each year. We are looking for all who want to have an incredible experience and be a part of something special in 2021.”

Coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ironman safety protocols are in place to ensure athletes and volunteers have a good and protected experience.

Volunteers can sign up online or by emailing Neilson at [email protected]. Dozens of positions are available with less than a couple weeks to gather all that are needed to deliver a world-class race. 

The Ironman Foundation also has funds available to groups who sign up to volunteer. Contact Neilson for more information at 435-632-2454.

In this 2018 file photo, volunteers help competitors strip their wetsuits after the swim leg of the Ironman 70.3 St. George, Hurricane, Utah, May 5, 2018 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

St. George has gathered worldwide attention after being selected to host the 2021 Ironman 70.3 World Championship in September.

“Being chosen for the World Championships is a testament to the incredible community and the volunteers that we have every year without fail,” Kevin Lewis, director of the Greater Zion Convention & Tourism Office, said in the press release.

The World Championship race will take place in the fall, so for now, Nelson is focused on first filling volunteer spots for this race before turning his attention to the September event. 

This year, over 100 professional athletes and 2,700 competitors from all over the world are expected to test their skills in what is quickly becoming known as the land of endurance.

For more information on the St. George Ironman, visit the event webpage or Facebook page.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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