The Montgomery Canal Triathlon will be back in all its glory this year, a welcome announcement from one of the biggest events held annually in the region.
The pandemic has limited the major fundraising event for the past two years, but organizers confirmed last night that it will be back in a big field for the bike, canoe and race event on the 7th may.
The triathlon is organized by the Friends of the Montgomery Canal and is supported by the Canal & River Trust in support of the restoration of the Montgomery Canal. It’s a popular cross-border event, starting in Newtown and ending in Shropshire.
This annual event supports the restoration of the canal and ran for eight years before the Coronavirus in 2020 caused a postponement to 2021. The ninth triathlon was held on September 4, 2021 and, due to ongoing restoration work at Crickheath, was shorter than usual. 35 miles at a special “marathon” length of approximately 27 miles.
May’s event will again run like a marathon with a 12 mile cycling section from Newtown to Belan, 5½ miles canoeing through Welshpool to Pool Quay and 9½ miles on foot to the finish in Crickheath.
Christine Palin, President of the Friends of the Montgomery Canal, said: “We look forward to the triathlon and hope that this year it will not be affected by any restrictions.
“Last year’s conditions forced us to move the event to the fall. There has already been so much interest, even before reservations have opened, that we hope that we will not have to limit the number of participants.
“Last year’s alternate format was enjoyed by a lot of participants so we will be repeating it, starting from the new Open Newtown base. The new arrangements mean canoeing through the center of Welshpool, which draws attention to what the canal will bring to the city when it is connected to the rest of the waterway system.
“The event also shows what has been achieved so far in the reopening of the canal. After the closure, many road bridges were removed, blocking the canal: the cycle section includes five of these crossings; in contrast, the Canoeists will pass the bridges to the north and south of Welshpool which are once again open to navigation.
“The final section on foot, on the section to the Welsh border and through Llanymynech includes the four roadblocks which can be re-opened with recently announced government grants plus the Schoolhouse Bridge which will be rebuilt this year as one of most exciting projects of the Restoration.
“The Montgomery Canal Triathlon has always been successful in raising funds for restoration. The Restore the Montgomery Canal! appeal is raising the final funds for the reconstruction of the Schoolhouse Bridge, the largest project volunteers have ever undertaken on the canal.
“The triathlon is popular with families as well as the more athletic with participants aged 8 to 80 coming from across the country – and sometimes beyond! We are sure this year will be just as enjoyable.
Booking for the Montgomery Canal Triathlon will open in the coming weeks and will be available only through the website https://themontgomerycanal.org.uk/friends/montgomery-canal-triathlon/.