KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho --- Coeur d’Alene’s Chamber of Commerce is renegotiating the contract that brings the annual Ironman to Coeur d’Alene.
The chamber is a non-profit and pays a significant sponsorship fee to host the race every year and not all businesses benefit, said a city council member. Some businesses get a bump but because of closed streets and locals that leave town that weekend other businesses suffer, according to the chamber president, Steve Wilson. He said the chamber is searching for a "win win" solution to improve the current situation.
Wilson said each year, the chamber has to pay a significant sponsorship fee to the World Triathlon Corporation, a for-profit company. He would not specify the amount.
The council member said the Chamber of Commerce shoulders most of the burden of the race and has to provide security and some rooms. Chamber of Commerce leaders said they are not trying to end any long term relationship with Ironman.
The World Triathlon Corporation is likely phasing out the full Ironman race, with it likely moving forward as only a half race, said a city council member. Last year was the first year that Ironman held two races in Coeur d'Alene instead of one. There was a half race in June and then the full Ironman in August. KREM 2 reached out to the World Triathlon Corporation for comment and as of 4:00 p.m. they had not responded.
This race has been happening in Coeur d’Alene since 2003, according to the Ironman website. Wilson said their current contract runs through 2020.