The start of the 2019 Pontevedra Multisport World Championships by Santander is approaching, it will start on Friday 26th April with the Parade of Nations and the Opening Ceremony. Right now the registration stands are open and ready to issue bib numbers to the four thousand athletes participating in the different races of the event, in the the Expo, la Alameda Pontevedra. The Mayor of the City, Miguel Anxo Fernández Lores; the Head of Operations of the ITU (International Triathlon Union), Thanos Nikopoulos; the Long Distance Triathlon world champion, local athlete Pablo Dapena; Jorge García, Competition Director from the Spanish Triathlon Federation; and Anxos Riveiro, Councillor for Sports of the Pontevedra City Council; appeared this morning to talk of the progress of the organisation and preparations until now.
The Mayor of Pontevedra said he was “completely calm. The work that has already been done over many months, years even, by many people, has allowed everything to be perfect at this time.” The only drawback up until now is the rain, although Miguel Anxo Fernández Lores affirms that “the forecast indicates that from the start of the competitions it will be a pleasant week and with very good weather conditions”. The first mayor of Pontevedra wanted to also thank and highlight “the work of many groups in the city who are completely involved with the organisation and the event. Everything has been prepared in the best possible way and I can only be proud of my city¨ said Fernández Lores.
Thanos Nikopoulos, Head of Operations at ITU, said that the entire family of the International Triathlon Federation is “very excited about the World Champs in Pontevedra, a model city and an example of sustainability, quality of life and environmental protection”. The members of the ITU staying in Pontevedra feel “very honoured by the hospitality and welcome from Pontevedra” and have noticed “a transversal support from the entire city for the event, which guarantees ten days of sports situated in an excellent place”. Nikopoulos has no doubt that the Multisport 2019 World Champs ¨is going to be a great event thanks to all the parties involved, a safe and spectacular event that will lay the foundations of quality in the organisation that will be incorporated into the ITU manuals” .
Pablo Dapena, who, here in his home city, will try to keep his crown title of LD Triathlon World Champion, which he achieved last year in Fyn, Denmark. He said that: “the 4th of May will be very special. Competing at home always is, but after a week here enjoying the atmosphere of the World Champs and other races it will be even more special.” For him, Saleta Castro and Javier Gómez Noya himself, “the support of all the people is incredible. We feel supported by the whole city, waiting for us, asking how we are doing and assuring us that they will be there on the day of the race supporting and encouraging us.¨ Regarding the sporting event, Dapena commented that “there are a lot of high level athletes, it’s going to be a hard race, but the work is almost done”. The Galician has been “training specifically for this race since November of last year, and now I plan to enjoy these days.” The LD Triathlon World Champion also appreciated the slight changes made to the cycling course for his race, “removing a couple of curves that were a bit more dangerous and leaving a totally clean and perfect course to compete on.” On this bike course “knowing the layout can be a small advantage” for local athletes.
Finally, Anxos Riveiro, Councillor of Sports for the City of Pontevedra, said that “the most difficult of all these months, especially these coming days, is to coordinate so many groups and many people working for the same goal.” The most gratifying thing for the Mayor is “seeing the excitement of everyone in the city. It’s something that makes everything easier.”