Two athletes die at Ironman South Africa

Race organizers have announced that two athletes passed away after having issues during the swim at the Ironman African Championship in South Africa on Sunday.

| April 8, 2019 | NEWS

Two athletes died at the Ironman African Championship in South Africa.

Two athletes died at the Ironman African Championship in South Africa.

Photo >Tom Pennington/Getty Images for Ironman

According to an official statement from Ironman posted on Facebook, two participants at the Ironman African Championship passed away after having issues during the swim. 

According to reports, the two independently asked for medical help during the opening leg of the race. Lifeguards took the athletes out of the water and they were taken to hospital, where they passed away. 

Local media in South African have reported that one athlete suffered a heart attack during the race, while the other reportedly had convulsions.

Shorter swim

The swim portion of the long-distance race, which is held in Port Elizabeth, takes place in the Indian Ocean. Due to rough conditions, race organizers shortened the swim to just 1.6 of the planned 3.8 km swim distance.