Last week we published the news that the $50 Kona lottery, which would allow 100 age-groupers every year to join the qualifying pro-athletes, had been declared illegal by the US Federal government, and was eradicated with immediate effect. The news came as a shock to many non-pros for whom the lottery was the only way to get a place on the Kona starting line.
The most common question has been “what will replace it?”
Well, Ironman gave some clarification yesterday of what Kona entry might look like going forward. Ironman CEO Andrew Messick has said that possible routes include a smaller free lottery, or to expand the Ironman Legacy Program, created in 2012 to “to find the pathway to Kona for athletes that aren’t blessed with great athletic ability.” It rewards athletes who have competed in twelve or more Ironmans with a place in Kona.
“The good news for us is that we are under enormous pressure to find slots for all the people who want to go to Kona, and while we will miss the lottery we’re happy to have the 100 slots back because we believe we can put those to good use for age-groupers.”