On May 7, 2022, St George, Utah will host the 2022 Intermountain Healthcare IRONMAN® World Championship, presented by the Utah Sports Commission. This honor will bring thousands of athletes from around the world as they compete on a course that features stunning views and challenging desert terrain. 

Those looking to attend will want to book their Southern Utah vacation rentals or resorts, choose their flights, and make other travel arrangements early, as the IRONMAN® World Championship will no doubt bring big crowds to the region for the days leading up to and immediately following the event.

Whether you’re planning to compete, are a part of the support team for an IRONMAN® athlete, or simply want to watch this spectacular event, keep reading to learn everything you need to know about the 2022 World Championship, and the part that Southern Utah plays in this unique event.

What is the IRONMAN®?

The IRONMAN® is a long-distance endurance race that puts athletes to the test on a 140.6 mile, or 226.3 kilometers, course. 

The race is a triathlon, and consists of three parts:

  • A 2.4-mile, or 3.9 kilometers, swim
  • A 112-mile, or 180.2 kilometers, bike ride
  • A 26.2-mile, or 42.2 kilometers, run

In addition to these challenging parts, the course often features rough terrain and may have racers facing harsh conditions. Athletes of all experience levels are put to the test in these races, as they face down both physical and mental hurdles. Professional athletes often take upwards of 8 hours to complete the course. Amateurs may be on the course for up to 17 hours.

What Does it Take to Compete?

Competing in any IRONMAN® event is no small feat. Every race is designed to push top athletes to the limit. But while many IRONMAN® events are open to any registrants, the World Championship is by qualification only. Individuals who previously qualified during another IRONMAN® event will compete in St. George this May.

This Isn’t St. George’s First TIme Hosting an IRONMAN®

The 2022 IRONMAN® World Championship won’t be the first race to take place in St. George, Utah. In fact, the inaugural IRONMAN® in St. George took place on May 1, 2010. From the very start, the St. George course gained a reputation for being one of the toughest IRONMAN® events in the entire world. The second race, in 2011, saw race day temperatures in the 90s (Fahrenheit), further adding to the difficulty. 

In the third year of the Southern Utah event, a rare storm caused another legendary race. Just minutes after the race started, a microburst storm hit Sand Hollow Reservoir, where the swimming portion of the race takes place. As a result, waves reaching two-to-four-feet high rose on the lake, and hundreds of athletes were pulled from the water. No one was injured, but the race became famous for having one of the largest non-finisher counts of any IRONMAN® events.

Following the 2012 race, the IRONMAN® 70.3 was moved to St. George in place of the standard IRONMAN® race. But in 2022, the IRONMAN® will return to St. George.

The 2022 IRONMAN® World Championship

On May 7, 2022, the Intermountain Healthcare IRONMAN® World Championship arrives in St. George, Utah.

Four categories are offered at this event, including Professional, Age Group, Handcycle, and Physically Challenged Open/Exhibition. Qualified racers will complete a swim in the reservoir at Sand Hollow State Park, before taking to the road for a hilly bike ride and run.

St. George’s location provides participants with several options for getting to and from the race. St. George Regional Airport (SGU) is located just a short drive away from the location of the race. For those looking for more flight options, Harry Reid International Airport (formerly McCarran Airport) in Las Vegas is two hours away. Alternatively, Salt Lake City International Airport is four hours North of St. George.

Participants looking for a relaxing place to stay during their visit can take advantage of Water Canyon Resort’s location in Hildale, just 45 minutes from St. George. Here, you can escape the crowds that the race will no doubt draw, and enjoy some peace and quiet both before and after the race. 

Our spacious one- and two-bed studios feature kitchenettes and living spaces that make it easy to stretch out during your visit, and enjoy some of the comforts of home. A microwave and mini-fridge make it easy to stock up on your favorite fuels ahead of the race. Outdoor courtyards allow guests to take in the stunning views while sipping their morning coffee, while a laptop-friendly workspace in each unit allows you to keep up-to-date with work, email, and more as needed.

Plus, the new Water Canyon Winery will make for the perfect spot for a post-race celebration. Enjoy a wine tour and tasting, and maybe take home a bottle or two as a souvenir of your event.

Coming Up Next: IRONMAN® 70.3 World Championship

The IRONMAN® World Championship in May isn’t the only event coming to the St. George area this year. On October 28 and 29, 2022, St. George will also host the IRONMAN® 70.3 World Championship event. This shorter event cuts the standard IRONMAN® distances in half for a more accessible event. Despite the shorter distance, athletes are still put to the test on a challenging course.

Whether you’re planning to attend both events or can’t make it to the IRONMAN® this May, now is a great time to book your stay for the IRONMAN® 70.3 World Championship.

Book Your Southern Utah Resorts for the 2022 IRONMAN® World Championship

Whether you’ll be competing in the 2022 IRONMAN® World Championship yourself or are planning to watch this exciting event, now is the perfect time to book your stay at Water Canyon Resort. Reservations are sure to fill up fast for this popular event, so book today to guarantee your choice of studios, and enjoy the perfect relaxing getaway during your time in Southern Utah.