Controversy Regarding the 2009 Challenge Coast of Barcelona-Maresme promoter Roberto Mondejar

Content below is from the site's 2009 archived pages except for the press release about the lawsuit filed by Felix Walchshofer’s Team Challenge against the 2009 Challenge Coast of Barcelona-Maresme promoter Roberto Mondejar and his Evolution organization.

 

 

Team Challenge Sues 09 Barcelona Organizer

TIMOTHY CARLSON

Fri Jan 29 2010

While the Roth, Germany-based Team Challenge has had a string of artistic and financial successes as they have expanded their race schedule to New Zealand, Germany, Austria, France and Denmark, they are now fighting one embarrassing problem child in Spanish court.

Right now, the 50,000 Euro pro prize purse for the October 2009 event has not been paid and there are two separate websites seeking entries for a May half distance and an October full distance Challenge Barcelona event.

Felix Walchshofer’s Team Challenge, the organization that runs the classic Challenge Roth Triathlon and new Challenge events around the world, is suing the 2009 Challenge Coast of Barcelona-Maresme promoter Roberto Mondejar and his Evolution organization on several fronts. One, to force Evolution to pay the promised 50,000 Euro professional prize purse, and two, to stop advertising on their website that they will be running Challenge Barcelona half and full distance races in 2010.

As of this writing, Mondejar’s Evolution organization is operating the Challenge-barcelona.com website and advertises a Half Challenge Costa de Barcelona-Maresme event on May 23, 2010 and a full distance Challenge Barcelona-Maresme event on October 3, 2010. Meanwhile, Walchshofer’s Team Challenge asserts that the Evolution group has no authority to advertise a race under the Challenge brand and has set up a new race organization and is advertising a May 16, 2010 Half Challenge Barcelona and an October 3, 2010 Challenge Barcelona event on their new website, challenge-barcelona.es.

“After the race in October, we decided to cancel the contract with Evolution to continue running Challenge Barcelona events,” said Walchshofer this Wednesday in a telephone call from Barcelona where he is pursuing the second round of a court case against Evolution. ”This happened because they didn’t fulfill many points of our contract and they failed to pay many contractors as promised. For Team Challenge, the quality of our events is most important. And quality means, of course, payment of prize money and the experience of the age groupers. We have to insure the quality of our events and to do so we filed against Evolution in Spanish courts in December.”

Mondejar and his Evolution organization did not respond to several emails and telephone requests for comment.

This week, Walchshofer announced that Team Challenge has formed a new partnership to run the Barcelona events. The new local organizer will be Triathlon Spain, SI, headed by CEO Jose Maria Corrales, the owner of Sport Area in Calella, the race site. The new race director will be Agusti Perez Capdevila and course director will be Jordi Perez Capdevila. Joining Walchshofer and the new organizers in a Barcelona press conference were prominent local politicians Maresme County Government President Josep Jo and Calella Mayor Josep Maria Juhe.

While Walchshofer is pursuing this case on several fronts in order to defend the integrity of the Challenge brand, he says that his lawyers in Germany and in Spain have advised him to let the legal proceedings play out before stepping in to pay the professionals money that Evolution is legally obligated to pay.

Walchshofer says if Team Challenge stepped in now—before getting a legal judgment—to make good on the prize money that Evolution refuses to pay, his lawyers have advised him that Evolution might claim that the payment had been made and they were no longer liable for the payment.

If the legal process fails to compel Evolution, says Walchshofer, “The most important thing is that the pro athletes will get all their money. We expect a resolution of the court case here in Barcelona in a few days which will require Mondejar to pay the money immediately. If this does not happen, we will speak with the new company here which has taken over the agreement and they will take care of the prize money.”

Right after the October event, race organizers promised third place finisher Hillary Biscay that prize money would be delayed one month until all drug tests were announced. On November 10, the results came back and all tests were negative. By December, Biscay had not received her 1,500 Euro travel costs and 3,500 Euro prize money—and neither had any of the top 10 men and top 10 women owed prize money.

Fourth place men’s finisher Graeme Stewart wrote about the situation on his blog, “The Evolution boss has a poor reputation in Spain and it seems unlikely that the pro athletes will be paid until they are forced to do so in court. This process could take months and many of the athletes are now cooperating to seek legal advice on getting the money sooner.”

While generally supporting Walchshofer’s Team Challenge, Stewart added: “It is now the view of many that Challenge should accept responsibility for athlete welfare not just in Germany, but in all of their franchised races and pay defaulted prize money. The success of their new races has come from a trusted Challenge brand and good prize money that attracts top pro athletes. If we are left to flounder when things go wrong, however, athletes are feeling let down and betrayed so what happens then?”

Walchshofer’s new Challenge Barcelona organization has made a commitment to give free entry to any age grouper who has been fooled into sending entry fees to the Evolution website and does not receive a refund.

As for the many pros who have formed strong bonds with Team Challenge for their generous expense and prize money policies and warm, personal attention at all their races, Walchshofer offered these words: “We say we will not let anyone stand alone in the rain. We definitely won’t let pro athletes caught in this situation stand alone in the rain.”

Twenty pro triathletes are waiting for Walchshofer to make good on his promise.

 

Talk about disappointment. The athletes are, of course, in a different league from the spectators, but they at least may have some recourse through the courts. The spectators, such as myself, will just have to suck it up. At least I will enjoy the beach and some chill time. As it turned out the end of this who trip ended about as bad as the cancellation of the race. I arrived back in NYC and learned that my upstairs neighbor had had a water pipe break . My place was wet, smelly and a total mess. Aside from having to find a company that would deal with the wet ceiings and walls, I had to contact my insurance company, and also find a place to stay. I looked at the carpeting, particularly the antique Persian rugs and wondered what the cost of oriental rug cleaning in nyc would set me back. Arggh! What a terrible end to a ztrip that had already gone sideways. Well, fate must have taken pity on me cuz I found Sunlight Fine Rug Care & Restoration who had the experience and expertize to deal with all my rugs. They also could deal with all the furnishing as well as drying out the apartment using an advanced air-injecting technology that would dry the walls and ceilings. I simply handed them the apartment and asked if they would handle the cleanup. A month later, the apartment was ready to be painted and I moved back within six weeks total. I hope the athletes were able to get as quick a solution to their issues surrounding the cancelled races / purse monies, etc.

 

Career Program

Challenge Costa Barcelona Maresme

The competition born in Roth, Germany, arrives in Spain in its two modalities: Medium Evolution Challenge, long distance triathlon with typical measures 1.9 km of swimming, 90 km of cycling and 21.1 km of running and Evolution Challenge with distances of 3.8 km of swimming, 180 km of cycling and 42.2 km of running on foot.

 

Challenge Media Distance Program - May 24, 2009

Wednesday, May 20

10.00 - 20.00 Challenge Information Center open 
16.00 - 20.00 open EXPO

 Thursday 21 May

10.00 - 18.00 Withdrawal of numbers at the Information Centre 
10.00 "Fun Run". Race for companions and relatives. 
10.00 - 20.00 Challenge Information Center open 
10.00 - 20.00 open EXPO

 Friday, May 22

10.00 - 18.00 Registration and withdrawal of dorsal 
10.00 - 20.00 open EXPO 
18.00 Junior Challenge

  Saturday May 23

  • 10.00 - 14.00 Inscription and removal of bibs
  • 10.00 - 20.00 Open EXPO
  • 11.00 Press Conference Professional Athletes
  • 15.00-16.00 Technical meeting prior to the race
  • 16.00 - 18.00 Billing of bicycles and bags
  • 19.00 Pasta Festival

 Sunday, May 24 - Career Day

  • 06.00 The transition zone for athletes opens
  • 06.15 - 06.55 Pre-departure Control / Chip Control 
  • 07.00 Departure
  • 14:00 Control closure 
  • 18.00 Awards ceremony and trophies
  • 21.30 Fiesta Challenge

The organizers reserve the right to make changes of all kinds as necessary.

 

 

About Us

Manager : Roberto Mondéjar 
Director of Career : Jordi Gonzalez 
Technical Director: Eduardo Nó 
Security: Carlos Guzman

Jordi González. Career director

Graduated in Advertising and Public Relations, for years he held different responsibilities in the Ironman of Lanzarote, from the coordination of the press office to the technical coordination of the event.

Other events in which it has been an active part are the Gran Canaria Media Marathon of which it has been founder as well as the International Duarte Powerman Gran Canaria that was celebrated successfully in the years 1998, 1999 and 2000.

During the years he worked at Club La Santa, he led numerous sporting events, including the International Marathon of Lanzarote, Tour of Lanzarote, etc., as well as training campuses with the Olympic triathlete Maribel Blanco.

He has also worked as a consultant for different events of institutions such as the Insular Institute of Sports of the Cabildo of Gran Canaria, and where he highlights the work he is currently developing for the German company TEAMChallenge GMBH, whose international expansion is actively involved.

 

Eduardo Nó. Technical director

A swimmer and cyclist in his youth, he has been a passionate triathlete since the year 85. His interest in sports knowledge led him to study the University of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences in the specialty Swimming in Madrid. Subsequently the Superior Titles of triathlon and cycling, studies of medicine, physiology, nutrition ?? By then he was already training triathletes, cyclists and swimmers.

Technical Director of the Spanish Triathlon Federation from 1994 to 2001, he directed the Spanish Olympic Triathlon Team at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney.

Until 2005 he continued as a triathlon coach at the High Performance Center in Madrid, completing 12 years of training of international triathletes.

Currently he assumes the Technical Management of the Challenge Costa Barcelona-Maresme and the Trainning Center of Evolution.

 

 

Maresme

 

 

History

The region of Maresme harmoniously combines the boom and richness of an internationally recognized tourist area, full of activities all year round, and the calm that offers a mountain made to measure for the walkers. The intense green of the vegetation, first of all, and the blue of the sea in the background, with vast beaches of golden and coarse grain sand, interrupted here and there by small coves, form an idyllic landscape of exquisite Mediterranean beauty, with Hot and dry summers and mild winters.

Calella

Known as the tourist capital of the Costa del Maresme, it is characterized by being a cosmopolitan and lively city, with a typical Mediterranean climate. 50 km from Barcelona and Girona, its geographical location and also its communication channels become a key factor for the realization of all kinds of excursions and activities. 

An offer of about three kilometers of beaches of golden and clean sand, deep blue waters, natural areas such as Dalmau Park, Manuel Puigvert promenade, Garbí promenade or Las Torretes, make Calella a dynamic, modern city And cozy that allows the visitor to enjoy a unique holiday destination.


Situation

The Maresme occupies a narrow strip of land in the northeast of Catalonia, between Barcelona and the Costa Brava. It is surrounded by the Tordera River, the Park of El Montnegre and the Corridor, the parks of the Serralada Litoral and the Serralada de Marina and the beaches of the Costa de Levante.

To access by car the following routes are recommended:

From France: Highway N-II (Girona-Barcelona) Motorway AP-7 ( E -7), exit Hostalric Tordera address.

-From Barcelona : Highway N-II (Barcelona-Gerona) Motorway C-32 ( E -19), Barcelona-Palafolls.

-From Granollers : B-40, linking with C-32 or the N-II in Mataro.

 

Challenge-Barcelona.com