XIAMEN, China, Nov. 9 (Xinhua) -- More than 2,000 triathletes will compete for 40 slots to qualify for 2017 Ironman KONA World Championship and 50 slots for 2017 Ironman 70.3 World Championship here on Sunday, according to a news briefing on Wednesday.
Southeastern coastal Xiamen will host the second race of Ironman 70.3 triathlon series in China since the brand was sold to Dalian Wanda Group last year. Ironman's debut in China was in Heifei city on Oct. 16.
Xiamen triathlon has attracted 2,179 athletes, 1,859 men and 320 women, from 57 countries and regions around the globe. 236 local citizens also register to challenge the endurance event.
The organizers invite many stars to the race, such as five-time Ironman 70.3 world champion Brad Kahlefeldt of Australia, and five-time Ironman 70.3 women's champion Radka Vodickova of the Czech Republic.
The 38-year-old Tim Don from Britain ranked 7th in 2016 Ironman 70.3 World Championship and won two titles in 70.3 series this season. Stuart Hayes from Britain and Brad Williams from the United States, runner-up and third place in Heifei, will fight for podium finish in Xiamen. Emma Pallant from Germany, the women's runner-up in Hefei, is on the list of competitive candidates as well.
Some other famous athletes include Josh Amberger from Australia, Dougal Allan from New Zealand, Fraser Cartmell from Britain, Denis Chevrot from France.
Following are some big names in women's group: Sarah Piampiano and Lisa Roberts from U.S., Jeanni Seymour from South Africa, Parys Edwards from Britain, Kate Bevilaqua and Sarah Crowley from Australia.
The Xiamen event, title sponsored by local bank, consists of 1.2-mile swim, 56-mile bike and 13.1-mile half-marathon run. The 4-5 hours' show will be live broadcast on web.
The iconic Ironman, initiated in 1978 as a single race, has become a global sensation with more than 260 events across 42 countries and regions. It operates worldwide events that include the Triathlon Series, 70.3 Triathlon Series, 5150 Triathlon Series, Iron Girl, Iron Kids, road cycling events, mountain bike races, and other multisport races.