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September 15th 2019

Ilkley Triathlon

2019 relay entries still available!

The multiple award-winning

Ilkley Triathlon

2019 event will be on Sunday September 15th


The Ilkley Triathlon is a club-run sprint-distance event held every year since 1992, making it one of the longest running triathlon events held in the UK. It has a reputation for being a friendly race, ideal for novices and first-timers, with great support all the way around the course. However, the course is still a challenge for more experienced athletes. Indeed, both Brownlees have taken part in the past.

A testament to its popularity is that it has won the UK “Race of the Year” on multiple occasions, including 2015, and was nominated in the top three in 2016 and 2nd in 2017. Ilkley Triathlon remains one of the best value-for-money events in the racing calendar. It is set in the stunning Yorkshire countryside and is simply a must-do event.

Don’t fancy racing as an individual? Why not get together with some friends and enter a team: one person swims, one person bikes and the third finishes with the run. It can be a fun way to start your life as a triathlete. With a multi-lap course, full catering facilities and great views, it’s also perfect for your supporters to enjoy the day whilst cheering you on. In recent years, it has sold out within hours, so if you would like to find out what all the fuss is about and take part, then don’t delay!

Entries for this event sell out within hours, so don’t hang around if you would like to enter for 2019!

Key Information

  • Distance: 500m/14.5km/4.8km
  • Date: Sunday September 15th
  • Venue: Ilkley Pool and Lido (view location on Google Maps).
  • Start: 9:00am to 4:00pm (start times published 2 weeks before event).
  • Indoor pool swim with extra-wide lanes
  • Chip timing
  • Goodie bag
  • Full catering facilities
  • Changing rooms & showers
  • Dedicated off-street car park
  • Prices:
    • Adult: £36/£39 (BTF/non BTF)
    • Junior: £18/£20 (BTF/non BTF)
    • Team: £42

The Course

The Ilkley Triathlon is a sprint-distance event with a 500m indoor swim, followed by a 14.5km bike (3x laps of a 4.8km circuit) and a 4.8km run (1x lap of the same circuit). Whilst the event is taking place at the Ilkley Pool & Lido, the swim takes place in the indoor pool with extra-wide lanes, and not in the outdoor lido.

  • Swim 500m indoor
  • Bike 14.5km (3x laps)
  • Run 4.8km (1x lap)

The bike and run follow the same course (see map above and video below) – a 4.8 km circuit along Denton Road, Carter Lane, Curly Hill and Middleton Road. The first mile is flat, the second uphill, and the third mile downhill. The course is suitable for all abilities, but can be challenging if you want to make it so.

For questions, e-mail us at ilkleytriathlon@gmail.com


What do I wear?

You don’t need anything specific for a triathlon. You can swim in a costume, then put a T-shirt and a pair of shorts over the top and you are ready to bike & run! However, you could also consider investing in a pair of tri shorts or a tri suit, which are garments specifically designed to be worn throughout the event. A pair of goggles will be needed in the pool, and you will be provided with a swim cap. You will need to display your race number on the run & bike legs. For a few pounds, a race belt really helps here.

Have a look at this guide here for some great tips for a first-timer on what to wear and what to expect in a triathlon.

Can I get changed in the changing rooms after my swim?

Yes, of course. Just please let the poolside official know that this is your intention when you arrive at the pool. Please be aware that the clock won’t stop ticking. But yes, you may.

What bike do I need?

You just need a bike that works! We have had people compete on shopping bikes with baskets on the front, mountain bikes, road bikes, and even high-end, professional-level carbon racers. Just make sure it’s serviced well and the gears and brakes work efficiently, as there is a steep descent back into Ilkley on the quite hilly course.

The circuit doesn’t really suit TT bikes should you own one; a normal road bike would be preferable. One requirement is a helmet; you will not be permitted to race without one. The route is not on closed roads, but very quiet lanes. It’s unlikely you’ll even see a car ascending Carter Lane. But normal road rules do apply. Crossing the white lines onto the opposite carriageway is an automatic disqualification, for example. Please ensure your bike also has bar-end plugs.

What if I can't compete?

We can offer a £20 refund up until a month before the event. After that, we’re afraid there are no refunds.

When should I arrive?

We recommend arriving at least one hour before your start time. You have to register, set up your bike and gear in transition, change, and be poolside 10 minutes before your start time. You will need at least one hour to do all this. You can’t be late. If you miss your start time, you can’t race!

How do I know what swim time to put down?

We need to know roughly how fast people will be so you are swimming in a lane with people of a similar speed. If you are unsure, it’s better to be conservative. You could go to a local 25m pool and time yourself going at a manageable pace for four lengths. That will give you a time for 100m. Then multiply this time by five. You can change your time after registering until about a month before the event if you are still unsure.

Do I have to swim front crawl?

Not at all. Many people swim breaststroke. Please note, however, that for safety reasons, with multiple people swimming in one lane, you won’t be allowed to swim backstroke.

Can I do tumble turns

Yes, you can. Tumble turns are permitted.


Having said this, withdrawals do happen and this means people on the waiting list can have a chance to get into the race. So make sure you are on that waiting list if you didn't enter before spots got filled up! Visit our website to find the link to the entry form!

Just a friendly reminder that withdrawals from the #IlkleyTriathlon need to reach us before 9AM on 18 August for a refund of £20 for individual and team entries and £10 for juniors. Refunds will not be issued after this time regardless of reason for withdrawal.

Ten weeks left till the #IlkleyTri! Prepare yourselves for a bag filled with goodies at the finish line from:

Yorkshire Tea https://t.co/Uw6H2obroH
BAM Organic https://t.co/tQZBDic1ic
Eat Grub https://t.co/z8sbz6KVnK
A. Vogel Atrogel https://t.co/67GJ9WBx0Y