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Irondelta - Lido delle Nazioni - Comacchio

The traditional triathlon at the Lido delle Nazioni: what you need to know

Turning the Ferrara shores into an unmissable destination for sportsmen as well: this is what Irondelta has succeeded in doing over time, the historic Olympic triathlon and sprint triathlon competition organised every year - barring pandemic complications - since 2011 at the Lido delle Nazioni by the Ferrara Triathlon Club. Two days, usually a weekend in September also to give participants the advantage of a climate that is not too hot and humid, during which running, cycling and swimming become the star activities of life in the province of Ferrara and attract here, along with the athletes competing and their teams, fans of Olympic disciplines who can watch the races as well as enjoy the sea, nature, history and culture and - why not - the local cuisine. Let us take a closer look, however, at what the Irondelta at Lido delle Nazioni consists of and what makes it different from other races. 

How the triathlon at Lido delle Nazioni takes place, who can participate, what is the route

The formula is, as already mentioned, well established: in fact, more than ten years have passed since Paolo Temporin's Triathlon Ferrara Club brought triathlon in its various versions to Lido delle Nazioni. Every year, the first appointment with the Irondelta is on Saturday when the sprint race takes place: the three disciplines and the order in which they are tackled by the competing athletes are the same as those of the classic triathlon, i.e. they start with swimming, then get on the bike and finally do a stretch of running; it is the distances covered in each block that vary and are shorter, more specifically 750 metres for swimming, 20 thousand metres for the bike and 5 thousand metres for running. The next day, Sunday, at the Irondelta in Lido delle Nazioni, it is the turn of the Olympic triathlon, the more classic one: the competing athletes compete in the 1,500 metre swim, the 40,000 metre bike and the 10,000 metre run, which inevitably require greater athletic preparation. 

If the question is, after all, who can participate in the Lido delle Nazioni Irondelta, the detailed answer can only be found in the regulations, which generally vary for the different editions and which are worth checking every year, also to find out how much the registration fees are, any concessions for clubs participating with several teams, etc. Almost always, however, one of the prerequisites is to be already registered or to complete registration with the FITRI - Federazione Italia Triathlon or, for foreign athletes, with corresponding bodies, in time for the race. This is enough to realise that the triathlon competition at the Lido delle Nazioni, at least the one in September, is a triathlon for agonists and, not by chance, its various editions over time have attracted professional athletes to the Ferrara area, sometimes well-known even internationally. Each year in the Irondelta regulations the requirements are clarified, including the type of bike that can be used or the age limits for competing in the various categories, as well as the route being defined. 

Small variations between one edition and the next of the Irondelta may in fact occur in this sense as well, even if the special feature of the triathlon race at Lido delle Nazioni remains the opportunity, as mentioned at the beginning, given to athletes and their staff but also to family members and passionate fans who follow the sport to get to know places that might otherwise risk remaining off the major tourist routes such as the pine forest and seafront of Volano or the Romea Beach. It is in the last location that the Irondelta route usually begins, with the distribution of bibs and the start of the batteries. 

The triathlon at the Lido delle Nazioni is, in both the Olympic and sprint versions, an individual race, although the discipline can also be practised - and indeed is in other competitions - in teams. The main rules to be followed are the official ones established by the FITRI and, at least for the cycling section, those of the Highway Code. There are penalties, up to exclusion from the race, for those who transgress the rules and for those who do not make sure to follow the correct route. Since the Lido delle Nazioni area is an area of naturalistic interest, included as it is in the Po Delta Park, participating athletes are also called upon, under penalty of penalties to be applied to the final result, to respect the surrounding environment. Preparation for the Irondelta is recommended for those who practice triathlon at a competitive level and specific for the individual disciplines of swimming, running and cycling. The mostly flat terrain of the area, the straight and regular routes on well-maintained asphalt roads do not add any complicating elements to the race, nor do they require any special equipment. 

What is the average Irondelta in spring and what is the programme for the 2022 edition?

Because a (relatively) easy circuit, in fact, the Lido delle Nazioni is chosen every year for an event that is in many ways on the sidelines of the Irondelta and dedicated to those who do triathlon, yes, but not at a competitive or professional level: the so-called medio di primavera, from the season in which it takes place. Distances and stages to be covered are shorter than those proposed to participants in the summer race, at least in its standard version - different is, however, the discourse with regard to the sprint triathlon - and this is why the audience of participants is more varied. It is not infrequent, however, that those who intend to participate in the September Irondelta also take part in the medium Irondelta in spring to begin to familiarise themselves with the area and its specificities, especially if it is the first year they register for the race, or to have an opportunity to already train on the race circuit. 

While not many details are known about when the September 2022 Irondelta will take place, everything is already ready at Lido delle Nazioni for the Spring 2022 Irondelta medio. The appointment is for Friday 8 and Saturday 9 April 2022 at the Club Village of the Spiaggia Romea: the first day to carry out the "preparatory" operations for the race and the second for the actual race. Participants have until next 3 April to finalise registration and payment of the participation fee and must bring their FITRI membership card and competitive sports certificate, as well as a carefully checked no-draft bike. It will start, as usual, with swimming for a total of 1900 metres to be covered in a triangle. We will then move on to the bike course: 86 kilometres on a circuit closed to traffic to be covered four times. Finally, there will be the run: 21 kilometres on a mixed course in the Volano pine forest. In the afternoon, the prize-giving ceremony. 

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