Roka has expanded its deal with Ironman to include a global partnership that makes it the official global wetsuit and swim partner of Ironman, the Ironman World Championship and Ironman 70.3 World Championship events.
The deal, signed Thursday, includes an expanded physical presence at the group’s races around the world. And the two have collaborated on swim products for the World Championship in October, which will mark the 40th anniversary of the race. As part of the agreement, the co-branded products will now be sold on both the Ironman and Roka web sites.
The Austin, Tex.-based activewear company has been a partner of the triathlon race brand since 2014. The prior deal had covered only the Ironman events in the U.S. But Roka will continue to give out the Fastest Swimmer Award to the quickest age-group athlete during the swim at the Ironman events.
“Ironman is the best in the world at providing the ultimate endurance race experience, and Roka is the best in the world at supporting those athletes with technical products that meet the demands of the day,” said Rob Canales, Roka’s cofounder and chief executive officer. “We’re excited to collaborate with Ironman on new products and services and to immediately bring our existing ones to more athletes around the world.”
Since its founding six years ago by two former All-American swimmers from Stanford University, Roka has outfitted some of the sport’s best professional athletes with wetsuits, goggles, race apparel and eyewear. Now, all athletes can sample Roka products prior to each Ironman event in the expos.
“I first tried Roka’s Maverick wetsuit and Viper swimskin in 2014 and have been using both ever since, however the products have at times been difficult to find outside the U.S.” said Javier Gómez Noya, a two-time Ironman 70.3 World Champion who splits his time between Spain and New Zealand. “With this expanded partnership, Ironman athletes from around the globe can now get their hands on the cutting-edge technology that has been my secret weapon for the past four years.”
“Roka embodies the spirit of innovation and ingenuity that aligns well with the needs of our athletes,” said Matthieu Van Veen, chief revenue officer for Ironman. “We are eager to expand this partnership to cover all of our events globally.”
In 2018, there will be 40 races in North America, 32 in Europe, and 13 in Oceania, as well as the World Championships in both the full and half-Ironman distances. The Ironman consists of a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike ride and a 26.2-mile run. Ironman 70.3 is half that distance, or a 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile run.