SuBIT 2014 Update (New Routes!)

I attended the press launch for the 2014 KSWISS Subic Bay International Triathlon (fondly referred to as “SuBIT”) — and boy, was that press launch full of big news.

Subic Bay International Triathlon 2014
Subic Bay International Triathlon 2014

KSWISS announced that this SuBIT is the last triathlon they are sponsoring in the Philippines. Due to a global realignment of strategy — they are focusing on lifestyle wear rather than performance gear — KSWISS is pulling out of athletics. So, that finisher shirt you get after completing this race? That’s the last ever KSWISS SuBIT finisher shirt. (Which also makes me wonder who the new shirt supplier will be at this year’s Cobra Ironman 70.3 Philippines…)

The other big news of the day concerned the race routes.

The routes I have done in the past three years of my participation of the race are no more (this applies to minisprint, sprint, and standard distances). Due to the construction project at Dungaree Beach (the former swim start), the new swim start will be 2.5 kilometers away at the Subic National Container Terminal, which is the swim exit for the Century Tuna 5150. This also means Transition 1 moves to that area. Because there is no beach in that area, it will be a water start and will be a large 1.5-kilometer loop.

SuBIT 2014 standard distance swim

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This isn’t the first time SuBIT has moved its swim start. The swim originally was held at the Boardwalk area, with just one transition area for swim-to-bike and bike-to-run, before tests showed the level of E.coli bacteria in the water was unacceptable. It was then moved to Dungaree, which also necessitated the separate T1 and T2 areas which have since then been confounding newbie triathletes with the question: “Where do I put my gear?” ;) (Answer: rack your bike in T1, and leave your running shoes at T2.)

The new bike course is two loops, is 90% flat, and no longer negotiates the climbs of Corregidor Road, which in the past has been SuBIT’s signature route for age groupers. With the ITU athletes racing on the same course on the same day as us — and they don’t like climbing too many hills, apparently — logistics dictated we follow the same course as theirs. Age groupers still aren’t allowed to draft, though.

SuBIT 2014 standard distance bike

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The minisprint and sprint bike routes will take participants back to the NCT (so T1 and T2 are the same), and the run course and finish will also be in that area.

Transition 2 for the standard distance, instead of being in the boardwalk area, will be at the Manila parking area at Harbor Point Mall. That’s also where the finish line will be. The run will still be done in three loops around the same block in the boardwalk area, though.

SuBIT 2014 standard distance run

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This will certainly shake up the dynamics on race day. Although I’m disappointed I won’t be able to attempt to break three hours on the old course, the new course will be a different experience and will set this SuBIT apart from my previous ones.

Registration is only until March 31, so if you’ve been on the fence about registering, it’s time to do it now!

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