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Cork County Council backs further Ironman events despite death of two men during Youghal race

Some of the professional women beginning the swim event in Cork in August. Photograph: John Hennessy

Cork County Council has said it will continue to support Ironman races in Youghal in future having considered accounts presented by both Ironman and Triathlon Ireland on the event held in the area in August at which two men died.

Ivan Chittenden (64), from Toronto in Canada and UK-based Brendan Wall (45) of Cardrath, Slane, Co Meath died during the Ironman event in Youghal on August 20th in separate incidents during the swimming part of the race.

The circumstances surrounding the men’s deaths and the safety of the race have led to disagreements between Ironman and Triathlon Ireland.

In a statement Cork County Council Chief Executive Tim Lucey said that, having considered accounts from both the Ironman organisers and Triathlon Ireland (TI), the authority will continue to sponsor the event staged in Youghal.

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“Cork County Council, as host sponsor, has supported the Ironman Ireland in Youghal in 2019, 2022 and 2023.

“The Ironman Cork event is of significant tourism and economic importance to the region, having already generated an economic impact of almost €20m, a continuation of which Cork County Council would wish to see.”

“As part of this arrangement, Ironman is the owner of the event. Ironman has sole responsibility for the management and co-ordination of the event. This responsibility includes running the event with due care, skill and attention.”

“The matter of the sanctioning of a permit by TI, such that [the] triathlon is run under federation technical rules, is a separate matter between Ironman and TI. This is a matter which will be determined between both parties, independently of Cork County Council.”