The organizers of the Miyajima International Power Triathlon Championship Through the Hatsukaichi are calling it a day. Otherwise known as the Miyajima Triathlon and referred to as the "Woodman", the race is quite possibly one of the most unique bucket-list races in Japan. Since 2007, Woodman has had 13 renditions, but the curtains will close for good following the 2023 edition on June 18.
An A to B race, Woodman is famous for the unique one-way 2.5km swim starting on Miyajima island through the iconic orange torii gate. In the last edition (2019), the torii gate was already closed for renovation and participants were unable to swim through. With the renovation slated for completion by the end of 2022, it seems the Woodman finale will be the last time triathletes will be able to swim through the torii gate and towards Hiroshima. The 55km bike may seem short, but with over 850m of climbing, it's a tough grind. Equally challenging is the 20km run featuring rolling hills and a big climb.
Details about its cancellation are vague, but what used to be a wildly popular lottery-based race had seen entries dwindle and in 2019, all entries were able to participate. Its demise is undoubtedly attributed to a variety of factors, including the lingering effects of the pandemic. For an event so uniquely Japanese and with such an epic course, its loss is not insignificant to the triathlon scene in Japan.