It’s been a good couple of days for Ironman fans and competitors from the UK and Ireland, after two new races were added to next season’s calendar – one full race and one 70.3.

Ironman News: Ironman Wales And Ironman 70.3 IrelandOn consecutive weekends in September 2011 the Ironman and Ironman 70.3 circuits will be within touching distance of UK fans and athletes, after brand new races in Ireland and Wales were confirmed by the race administrators. This exciting news represents yet further evidence of the rapid growth of triathlon in this part of the world.

Ironman 70.3 Ireland will take place in the city of Galway and the surrounding area on Sunday 4 September 2011. The location on Ireland’s breathtaking west coast will be a real treat for the athletes and the spectators, and the organisers are expecting places to sell out rapidly. The race starts with a swim in the fresh and clear waters of Galway Bay and finishes with a city centre run that will take in all of Galway’s main landmarks.

Earlier today it was also confirmed that 2011 will see the inaugural Ironman Wales, which is scheduled for 11 September. The main bulk of the 180km bike leg will take place in Pembrokeshire National Park in the south west of the principality – one of the most beautiful areas in the whole of the UK. Both events will offer age group qualifying slots for their respective world championships. There’ll be 35 places up for grabs in Ireland for the 70.3 worlds in Clearwater, Florida, while Ironman Wales will offer 50 athletes the opportunity to book their plane ticket for Kona at the end of next season.