Princely bonanza for PE

READY TO RUN: A file photo taken in 2014 shows the arrival of Bahraini princes Nasser, left, and brother Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa at the Port Elizabeth Airport. Picture: BRIAN WITBOOI
READY TO RUN: A file photo taken in 2014 shows the arrival of Bahraini princes Nasser, left,
and brother Khalid bin Hamad Al Khalifa at the Port Elizabeth Airport. Picture: BRIAN WITBOOI

Big-spending Bahraini prince returns to compete in Ironman

ONE of the Bahraini princes, who spent a whopping R10-million on a visit to Port Elizabeth two years ago, will be back in the city next month to participate in the Ironman SA event.

Prince Nasser bin Hamad Al Khalifa is one of more than 600 international athletes from 68 countries expected to take part in this year’s event.

Hotels and bed-and-breakfasts along the beachfront are already fully booked, according to Ironman SA managing director Keith Bowler.

In 2014, bin Hamad Al Khalifa and his brother, Khalid, brought an entourage of 80 to the city and rented about 42 rooms at the Boardwalk Hotel.

Bowler said they were expecting direct spend of about R48-million by athletes, excluding the money that would be forked out by the prince.

This could bump the figure up to R60-million – the same amount spent in 2014.

Speaking to councillors at an informal sports, recreation, arts and culture committee meeting, he said the 616 international athletes taking part represented an increase from previous years.

A total of 1 859 athletes will participate in the event on April 10.

Yesterday’s committee meeting was not a formal one because it did not meet the required quorum.

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