This weekend 1,500 triathletes will head to Wanaka, New Zealand for the 2013 Challenge Wanaka triathlon, featuring a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike and a 26.2-mile run.
Highlighting the pro field is two-time Ironman world champion Chris “Macca” McCormack. This will be McCormack’s first race as an ambassador for the series. He will face off in an early-season battle against Lean Griffin (AUS), Jamie Whyte (NZL) and Bryan Rhodes (NZL).
The women’s race features a dual between New Zealand’s top female long-course triathletes. Gina Crawford and Joanna Lawn both have several iron-distance titles to their names. Joining the on the course will be Kate Bevilaqua (AUS), Candice Hammond (NZL) and Julia Grant (NZL).
New Zealand Olympians Kate McIlroy and Nicky Samuels will be competing in a relay team with youth Olympic gold medalist Aaron Barclay.
Challenge Wanaka has a unique location on the edge of the TeWahipounamu World Heritage Area and Mt. Aspiring National Park, earning the reputation of the world’s most scenic long distance triathlon.
The race kicks off Saturday, Jan. 19 at 6:30 a.m. local time (12:30 p.m. EST Friday).
Live TV Internet coverage will be available through Challenge Wanaka Live at Challenge-wanaka.com.