Two men have died competing in an Ironman event in Co Cork on Sunday morning.
The men, one aged in his 40s and the other in his 60s, died in the swimming segment of the triathlon held in Youghal.
The men were brought out of the water by emergency services before being pronounced dead by medical personnel.
In a statement on social media the organisers of the event, IRONMAN Ireland, said they were saddened by the fatalities.
“We are deeply saddened to confirm the death of two race participants at the IRONMAN 70.3 Ireland, Cork 2023,” they said.
“During the swim portion of Sunday’s race, safety personnel provided immediate medical attention upon recognising the athletes were in need of assistance.
“We share our greatest sympathies with the families and friends of the athletes and will continue to offer them our support as they go through this very difficult time.
“We thank the safety personnel and first responders who worked quickly to provide the athletes with medical assistance.”
In a statement Cork County Council extended sympathies to the families.
“Cork County Council is deeply saddened over the tragic loss of two race participants during the IRONMAN 70.3 Ireland, Cork 2023 event in Youghal today,” they said.
“Our deepest sympathies go out to the families and friends of the athletes at this incredibly difficult time. Our thoughts are with those who have been affected, and we are currently offering every assistance required to the IRONMAN Group and all those impacted.
“We wish to express our gratitude to the response agencies involved, including our dedicated Fire and Emergency personnel, for their unwavering efforts during this difficult time.”
The pair had been competing in the half Ironman, a 70.3 mile half triathlon, which had been moved from Saturday to Sunday as a result of Storm Betty.
The event continued with a 90km cycle and a long-distance run.