IO, Bangka Belitung – The natural wealth of Bangka Belitung Islands Province (Babel) become the potential magnet to attract both local and foreign tourists. The data from Babel Tourism Office said that from over the past six years, the number of tourist visits has continued to increase by 9%. Especially since Tanjung Kelayang, one of the attractions in Bangka Belitung was designated as a Special Economic Zone by President Joko Widodo in March 2019.
In 2014, the number of domestic and foreign tourists visiting was recorded at 258.999 tourists, increasing to 260.930 in 2015. In 2016 it rose again to 367.316, 2017 to 369.422. In 2018 it reached to 425.942, and in 2019 the number of visits reached to 438.373 tourists.
The tourism potential continues to be echoed by the Babel Islands Provincial Government in order to improve the regional economy. Numbers of Babel tourism events were recorded, namely Toboali City on Fire Season, Tanjung Kelayang Festival, Sungailiat Triathlon, and Exploration of Spice Track Enchantment. The four events are part of 100 attractions that qualify for the Wonderful Indonesia 2020 Calendar Of Event (CoE).
Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 is a sport tourism event category. For the eighth time, Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 will be held again on Saturday, 11 April, 2020 in Tanjung Pesona, Bangka Regency.
“Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 is one of the biggest annual sport tourism events in the province of Babel that has its own uniqueness. This uniqueness is expected to be able to lift and promote local cultural wealth so that it can spur the tourism industry and the economy of Babel’s Province and its surroundings. Hopefully in the future there will be many more big tourism events,” said Mulkan, the Regent of Bangka Regency.
In accordance with its objectives of promoting Bangka tourism, the Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 event will be centered on Tanjung Pesona. Throughout the area, the participants will be spoiled by a stretch of beach with beautiful views. In addition, there are several attractions around the race track, namely Puri Tri Agung Temple, Bukit Rebo Pagoda, Tikus Emas Beach, Rambak Beach, Uber Bay Beach and Tanjung Pesona Beach.
“Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 will certainly be different from the previous year. The number of participants is clearly more than the previous participants count in 2019. To enliven the competition, there will be a cultural parade and Bangka’s Small and Medium Enterprises exhibition to entertain the participants and tourists who visits,” explained Thomas Jusman, Initiator of Sungailiat Triathlon.
Meanwhile, according to the Organizing Committee of the Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020, Budi Pamungkas, from seven previous events, the Annual Sungailiat Triathlon has proven to be a sport tourism that has a high attractiveness.
In each event, participants who took part were not only from athletes but also sports lovers from various professional backgrounds. Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 also conducted community engagements with several running communities such as the Indonesian Triathlon Buddies, BGR Triathlon Club and UI Triathlon to attract participants and increase competition awareness.
“Interest in athletic sports, especially running is indeed high. This is because a healthy lifestyle is becoming a trend in urban society. That is why we are also cooperating with several running communities in the capital. For Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020, the committee is targeting a total of 500 participants from 18 countries,” said Budi.
Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 event will compete in two sports namely triathlon and duathlon. The participants will start with a start at Tanjung Pesona which crosses Rebo beach road – Puri Triagung Street – ST. 12 Street – jendral sudirman Street, go back to the Rebo beach road and then, finally, the finish line is at Tanjung Pesona.
This year’s triathlon will compete in three categories divided by distance as follows:
– Standard distance (swimming 1.5km, bicycle 40km and running 10km)
– Standard distance relay (swimming 1.5km, bike 40km and running 10km)
– Sprint distance (swimming 0.75km, bicycling 20km and running 5km)
The sport duathlon will compete the sprint distance category with the distance of 20km and running 5km.
Jauhari Johan, National athlete who has won the standard distance category 5 times in the Sungailiat Triathlon from 2015- 2019 welcomed enthusiastically the implementation of the Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020. According to him the challenging race because it was followed by professional athletes from both domestic and abroad could add value from this competition.
“Last year I finished first in the standard distance category and this year I am very excited to be able to get back to the podium, especially since the event is already world-class,” said the 2019 SEA Games gold medalist in this duathlon number.
In this time, Mandiri 8th Sungailiat Triathlon 2020 received full support from PT Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk as the main sponsor. Diwangkoro Ratam, Head of CSR/ Sponsorship Dept. Corporate Secretary Group of PT Bank Mandiri (Persero) Tbk, said that Mandiri continues to consistently participate in various sport tourism activities. This is in line with Bank Mandiri’s mission to ‘Care for the interests of society and the environment’.
“We support public awareness of a healthy lifestyle. In addition, the contribution to the sport tourism event will also have a positive impact on the development of tourism and the economic growth of the local community,” he said.