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2014 IRONMAN World Championship will be a Diverse and Global Affair

More Than 2,000 Athletes From Around the World, Including Two Astronauts, an Italian Racecar Legend, an Olympic Speed Skating Gold Medalist, a former NFL defensive tackle...and an 84-year-old nun Will Descend Upon Kailua-Kona, Hawai`i for 36th annual event on October 11, 2014


IRONMAN today released the official list of competitors for the 2014 IRONMAN® World Championship presented by GoPro in Kailua-Kona, Hawai`i on October 11, with this year's field comprising one of the most diverse and global group of competitors in the 36-year history of the most iconic endurance event in the world.

More than 2,000 athletes representing 68 countries and territories on six continents will compete in this year's IRONMAN World Championship, which comprises a 2.4-mile open-water swim, 112 miles of cycling and a 26.2-mile run, all of which must be completed within 17 hours in order for athletes to be recognized as official IRONMAN finishers.

In addition to returning world champions Frederik Van Lierde of Belgium and Mirinda Carfrae of Australia, the other competitors are as diverse a group as has ever competed in Kona. They include 84-year-old nun Sister Madonna Buder, the oldest woman ever to finish an IRONMAN triathlon; NASA and European Space Agency (ESA) astronauts Chris Cassidy and Luca Parmitano; Italian CART racing legend and Paralympic handcycle champion Alex Zanardi; Don Davey, former NFL defensive tackle for the Green Bay Packers and Jacksonville Jaguars; and Apolo Ohno, the eight-time Olympic medalist in short-track speed skating and BUILT WITH CHOCOLATE MILK athlete.

"It is a testament to the growth of IRONMAN and the sport of triathlon to see such an impressive and varied international turnout at this year's IRONMAN World Championship." said Andrew Messick, CEO of IRONMAN. "No matter where they call home or who they are, one common mission unites all 2,000 athletes traveling to the hallowed grounds of Kona to compete in the IRONMAN World Championship -- crossing the finish line to hear 'You Are an IRONMAN.'"

While triathletes ranging in age from 18 to 84 have qualified to compete in the World Championship, the average age of 2014 age groupers is 43.5, well above the age average of professional triathletes at 33.7. The overall average age is 43.1

The United States is the most represented country with 777 competitors, accounting for nearly 35 percent of registrants this year. Athletes from 49 U.S. states are represented, with the greatest number coming from California (123), Hawaii (61), Colorado (58), Texas (48) and New York (43).

Internationally, Australia has the most athletes competing with 297, followed by Germany (150), Canada (134), Great Britain (113) and France (88).

Additional historical facts and stats on the field competing this year in Kailua-Kona, Hawai`i:

  • • 72 percent of participants (1,570 athletes) are male
  • • 28 percent of participants (625 athletes) are female which marks the largest female field at the IRONMAN World Championship
  • • With 625 female participants there is a nine percent increase in female participants from last year.
  • • This will be the largest athlete field ever at the IRONMAN World Championship
  • • 92 race participants (54 males, 38 females), or 4 percent of the total field, are professional athletes
  • • Great Britain has produced the women's IRONMAN World Championship winner in five out of the past seven years, with Chrissy Wellington winning four of those seven and Leanda Cave winning in 2012
  • • Australia has been dominant in the men's field, claiming the men's IRONMAN World Championship six of the past seven years with Craig Alexander winning three of the seven events and Pete Jacobs winning in 2012
  • • More than 5,000 volunteers will help make Kona a success; IRONMAN globally relies on approximately 356,000 race volunteers per year
  • • More than 204,000 registered athletes representing over 200 countries and territories competed in IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3® races this year.
  • • 24 new IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 races were added in 2014
The 2014 IRONMAN World Championship presented by GoPro can be viewed live exclusively on www.ironman.com. The comprehensive coverage will capture every aspect of the race and features a hosted show, athlete tracker and live blog.

NBC will air the IRONMAN World Championship special on Saturday, November 15 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. ET (check local listings for details).