The oldest triathlon of Europe

Almere is a renowned name in triathlon history. After Hawaï, the Holland Triathlon is the oldest triathlon of the world. Almere is the home of the Dutch triathlon sport, with two training clubs and a regional Topsport Centre, and many individual athletes.

Striking winners were pioneers like Axel Koenders, Gregor Stam, but also Gerrit Schellens, Frank Heldoorn, and Georg Potrebitsch. Yvonne van Vlerken, Heleen bij de Vaate, and Chrissie Wellington were on the stand in recent years. Several European Championships and World Championships were held in Almere. The fastest race, finishing in 7 hours, 50 minutes and 15 seconds, was realized by Matt Trautman in 2019. The fastest time by the women is set by Yvonne van Vlerken in 8 hours, 51 minutes and 13 seconds in 2017.

The finish area in Almere Haven
Challenge Almere-Amsterdam 2014. Photo Charlie Crowhurst / Getty Images 2014

Triathlon below sea level

The Almere course is located 4.5 meters below sea level: at the bottom of what was once the Zuiderzee (South Sea), only 25 kilometers from capital Amsterdam. Still surrounded by water, Flevoland is characterized by dikes, windmills, and endless straight polder roads where you can’t hide from the winds! The battle with the elements is a battle with yourself.

A facelift for the triathlon

In 2012, the 30th anniversary of the race led to a facelift. The location of the start and finish were moved to the city center. The swim, bike, and run course all start and finish on the Esplanade – the square alongside the central lake, on the edge of the curved surface of the futuristic shopping center. Another reason why you should experience the atmosphere of Almere. So, Challenge Almere, Challenge yourself!

Challenge Almere-Amsterdam 2014. Photo Charlie Crowhurst / Getty Images 2014