International Sporting Event Coming To Scilly
The Islands’ Partnership has secured an international event that will bring thousands of additional visitors and tens-of-thousands of pounds into Scilly’s economy over the next decade.
Scilly will be the first UK location to host the ÖTILLÖ Swim-Run event qualifier.
CNN has described it as “one of the toughest endurance races in the world.”
100 teams made up of two people will compete for the eight places in the World Championships, which are held in Sweden in September.
Scilly entrants will need to tackle a 45km long course and make at least eight swims during the qualifier.
The open-water swim sections will total around 10km with around 35km of trail running across St Mary’s, Tresco, St Martin’s and Bryher.
Zoe Parry of the Islands’ Partnership says ÖTILLÖ, (which is pronounced ur-till-ur, and means ‘island to island’) started in Sweden a decade ago as part of a drunken bet to race between islands with a drink at each one.
Competitors coming in at the back of the field had to pick up the tab.
Zoe said she thought it would fit well in Scilly and complement other sporting events like the Gig Championships and the Scilly Swim Challenge.
The contest will take place on Saturday 18th June. The IP were offered the choice of either August or June and Zoe says they went for the earlier date because there are more available bed spaces then.
The Partnership feel that the high media profile of this event will heighten awareness of the islands within in Scandinavia and Holland as well as France and Germany, areas that they’re keen to target in promoting Scilly.
Zoe says other heats in Switzerland and Sweden can attract up to 250 teams and Scilly’s event could easily grow to that size.
That would mean more people coming over and discovering Scilly over the ten years of the swim-run.