May 7th, 2015 –
They’ve been each other’s biggest competitors. They’ve been fighting for the same trophies, climbing the same thrones and training for the same races. On June 13th the three legends of triathlon, Chris ‘Macca’ McCormack, Thomas Hellriegel and Luc Van Lierde will cross the finish line at Challenge Denmark as a team.
When the inaugural Challenge Denmark kicks off on June 13th, the 1997 Ironman World Championship, Thomas Hellriegel, will jump in the water of Fuglsang Lake while the two biggest competitors from his long career of triathlon, are cheering for him. In the transition zone, Chris ‘Macca’ McCormack – the guy who climbed the same Ironman World Championship throne in both 2007 and 2010, will be waiting – ready to jump on the bike. After the 90 km’s ride, Macca will pass on the torch to history’s first European winner of the exact same Hawaiian race as both Hellriegel and Macca has won.
When Van Lierde – who did not settle with his 1996 victory at the Ironman World Championships, but took the same title in 1999 – has covered the 21,1 km run, he will be accompanied by both Macca and Hellriegel – just like any other relay team.
The Year of ‘97
These three guys can all look back at a career in triathlon that exceeds what most professional triathletes could ever dream of. With an age difference of 4 years, the three legends’ careers have crossed each other more than once, and made them big competitors. During one single year, 1997, the three athletes took practically all the titles there is to take at the international triathlon stage. Thomas Hellriegel won the Ironman World Championship, Macca won both the ITU World Cup Series and the Triathlon World Championships, and Luc Van Lierde took home a World Record on the Ironman distance as he finished in the time 7.50.27 at the race today known as Challenge Roth.
That was 1997. In 2015 they’ve left the stage and are now watching a new generation of young, hard-working athletes fighting for the trophies they’ve all three claimed during their career. On June 13th, decades of rivalry will be forgotten and three of the biggest legends in the sport will join hands and cross the Challenge Denmark finish line as one of the most spectacular relay teams a triathlon race has ever seen. As Race Director at Challenge Denmark, Claus Vesterby, expresses it: “I can’t decide if I’m more excited about this as a Race Director or as a private person getting the chance to see my biggest idols race as a team. This goes beyond my wildest dreams for a relay team,” he says with a big smile on his face.
Chris Macca McCormack
Luc Van Lierde
ABOUT CHALLENGE DENMARK:
Challenge Denmark is a part of Challenge Family, the fastest growing global long distance triathlon series, now with 40 long distance triathlons in 17 countries around the world. Challenge Denmark is unique with a family- and spectator friendly course in the Jutland Region and a finish line in Billund next to Lalandia. Challenge focuses on delivering the race of a lifetime to athletes of all ages and abilities, and creating a memorable spectator experience that captures all the excitement and emotion of this inspirational sport.
***FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Anne Nordestgaard Dyrehauge
Press | Challenge Denmark
Mobile: +45 42 42 49 28