SGRAIL100: a new format combining triathlon and gravel racing
On 31 October 2021, history will be made in Girona, Spain, with the first ever SGRAIL100 triathlon gravel adventure event.
The inspiration behind the event – and the biggest name in the field – will be none other than three-time Triathlon World Champion Jan Frodeno. But this is one triathlon that’s about so much more than just performance and competition.
A 2 km swim. 88 km gravel ride. And a 10 km trail run. Welcome to a whole new event format that mixes gravel racing with triathlon – and it’s all happening on 31 October 2021 in the region surrounding the Spanish city of Girona. A total 100 km of pure triathlon gravel adventure.
But first things first: let’s start with the name. ‘SGRAIL100’ is a combo of the event’s three core disciplines – Swimming, Gravel, and Trail running. And it’s an event focused on fun and adventure, rather than performance and competition. The event is the brainchild of triathlon legend Jan Frodeno and his long-time friend and manager Felix Rüdiger, who’s managing the organisational side of the SGRAIL100. “Unlike in traditional triathlon racing, SGRAIL100 takes the focus away from performance. It’s more about throwing a highlight event for the community – getting together in a chilled atmosphere, where pros, beginners, and fans can all have a good time,” explains Frodeno.
It goes without saying that the three-time world champ isn’t going to pass up the chance to compete in his own event around his adopted hometown of Girona. Indeed, Frodeno knows the area around the Catalonian city like no one else. The SGRAIL course is largely identical to the course he incorporated into his training as part of his preparation for the legendary Tri Battle, where he set the long-distance world record on his Canyon Speedmax CFR. It was then that the idea of the gravel triathlon was born.
When the starting gun fires for the first SGRAIL100 event on 31 October, Frodeno and his fellow athletes will start with a 2,000-meter swim in the bay of Cadaqués, a picturesque Mediterranean coastal town on the Cap de Creus peninsula. Then it's on to the bike for a hilly 88 km gravel course with over 800 metres of climbing, leading from Platja Gran in Cadaqués to Celrà. Frodeno’s ride of choice will be the Canyon Grail CF SLX, a superlight gravel bike made for long-distance light gravel racing, with its incredible stiffness-to-weight values and iconic, ergonomic Double Decker Bar. The SGRAIL100 ends with a tough 10 km trail run, finishing up at La Comuna in Girona – the café owned by Frodeno and his wife Emma.
We’re proud to say that at Canyon we’ve been on board with this new event format right from the start – and we’ll be on-site in the thick of things in Girona. Before the event, the Canyon crew will provide technical service for the participants’ bikes, and also provide rental bikes. Plus, during the race, Canyon employees will be there to help out at various service points on the gravel course.
SGRAIL100 is the ideal opportunity for beginners to get started in the sport of triathlon. Because it’s not about performance – on the contrary, it’s an opportunity to get used to taking on the three disciplines of triathlon in a relaxed atmosphere and learn vital tri skills like getting experience in the transition area. Even world-level pros like Frodeno are riding gravel bikes more and more often, as they allow athletes to ride different kinds of routes than a traditional time trial or road bike, adding an extra measure of variety in your training schedule.
In short, this is going to be an incredible, not-to-be-missed event. We’ll let race organiser Felix Rüdiger wrap things up in his own words: "I'm really looking forward to the SGRAIL100. I’m excited to see all the different athletes from different countries, and I’m sure they’re all going to love the beautiful landscapes around Girona and the the laid-back SGRAIL vibes."
See you there.
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