LOOKING to try a new sport this year? Redcar will once again be hosting the Redcar Sprint Triathlon in July and entries are open.

Taking place on Redcar seafront on Saturday 30 July, this year’s competition promises to be bigger than ever before as the Triathlon becomes an official qualifying event for the World Age Group Championships.

One of just three qualifying events in the country, and the only one in the north of England, entries have already surpassed last year’s with almost 200 triathletes already lodging their entry.

However, there is still space for amateur athletes looking to take on a relatively flat triathlon, and a rare ocean swim, with entries open until Saturday 23 July.

For anyone who has never taken part in a Triathlon before, but is looking to tackle it this year, Everyone Active will be running Go Tri sessions in the Redcar and Cleveland Leisure & Community Heart. For more information call 01642 447721 or email taraoxley@everyoneactive.com.

Groups not looking to enter the event, but wanting to do their part in adding extra atmosphere to the event through dance performances, choirs or any other amazing activity, could be eligible for a grant of up to £1,000.

The grants come from a £10,000 pot managed by the Tees Valley Community Foundation and Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council. The goal is to support groups to deliver 10 projects on and around the event.

More information on how to apply for funding can be found by going to www.teesvalleyfoundation.org. The closing date for applications is Monday 24 April with groups receiving a decision on their application by Tuesday 2 May.

Cllr Carl Quartermain, Cabinet Member for Jobs, Skills and Leisure, said: “The fact that Redcar’s triathlon has been designated as a World Age Group Championships qualifying event is a vote of confidence in everything being done by staff at the council, and at co-organisers Tri-Hard, to create a quality event.

“With so many top level triathletes coming to Redcar and Cleveland, this is a perfect opportunity for more casual competitors to test their skill against some of Britain’s best.

“I would also encourage as many local sport and community groups as possible to apply for funding for their projects. Hundreds of spectators attend the Triathlon every year so this will be a perfect venue to showcase your group’s talents. I would like to thank the Tees Valley Community Foundation for their work with this aspect of the event.”

Hugh McGouran, Chief Executive of the Tees Valley Community Foundation, said: “We are looking forward to working with the council to support groups across the borough, they do great work every day of the year and this grant scheme is the perfect opportunity for groups to showcase themselves to the hundreds of triathletes and spectators who will be at the Triathlon in July.”

To find out more about the Triathlon, and to lodge your entry, go to: www.trihard.co.uk.