An old saying - the early bird gets the worm - could be an apt description of the competitors who join the Blue Lake Multisport Festival.
Today is the last day for entrants to get a discount by signing as an early bird.
The Blue Lake Multisport Festival is held annually every Auckland Anniversary Weekend with events for the family and the King and Queen of the Lake title for the best all-rounder.
This year's event is on Saturday, January 26 and Sunday, January 27. It features three flagship races that make up the King and Queen of the Lake competition - aquathon, 2km across the lake swim and a sprint triathlon, as well as shorter events to introduce people to racing. These are a 750m open water swim and a 5.5km fun run.
"Every year the holiday weekend becomes a time for Rotorua to welcome visitors to this festival and to also give it a go themselves," the Rotorua Association of Triathlon and Multisport event director Charlotte Pearson said. "We will have a large presence from New Plymouth with their city's swim squad using the Hinemoa Swim as an annual swim camp race, as well as athletes from Taupo and Tauranga."
She said while some people may believe the event was for the elite, the reality was different.
"We get some athletes at the start of their careers who use this to fine-tune themselves for other events but on the whole this is about grassroots - ordinary people getting out there and pushing themselves to be extraordinary."
The King and Queen of the Lake are determined as the best male and female athletes across the three events and in the past has come down to the final race to determine the top spot. Taupo triathlete Cameron Todd has won the title for the past three years but he has not yet entered the 2013 event.
"Both the King and Queen titles are wide open to anyone, making this the perfect event for upcoming juniors to make a name for themselves and take home a bit of pocket money," Pearson said.
The overall winners receive a $500 bonus and a jade pendant crafted by the carvers at Mountain Jade.
Entries are available online at http://regonline.activeglobal.com/evesbluelakemultisportfestival2013 with the early bird fee closing today.
Racing gets under way at 8.30am both days.