Sadly there is little new in the battle for the Auckland mayoralty - aside from Andrew Williams. After all the free lunches, face slapping and talk about an Olympic Games, things have gone all quiet.

There are now seven contenders for the top job, with John Banks saying he expects about 12 in the race before nominations close on 20 August.

One potential mayoral candidate I keep hearing about is Rich-Lister Tenby Powell who's married to the glamorous Sharon Hunter, who founded PC Direct.

Powell told me he would consider running for the mayoralty if it looks like Banks is losing the race. "I'm a big fan of John Banks, but if I don't believe he's going to win, I'll stand."

"Auckland deserves good leadership," Powell said. "I believe John Banks is the right man if he has the right council. I'd like to work with John. I'd be very interested in being Deputy Mayor. I think we'd be a fantastic team."

There's no denying Powell and Hunter would certainly add some much-needed sizzle to the race to be Supercity mayor.

Powell is proud of his blue-collar roots. "My dad was a mechanic and my mum was a registered nurse," he told me.

He is ex-military, with 24 years in the New Zealand Army and Territorial Forces, so he's bound to whip the council into shape. He holds the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the New Zealand Army Reserves and served in the Middle East on a United Nations posting as Deputy Commander.

He also has strong work ties with the South Auckland community and is listed on the books of celebrity agency Talking Heads as a business speaker alongside Suzanne Paul, Michael Hill and Bob Harvey. He was formerly in senior management with Fletcher Challenge and Skellerup.

"I'm waiting to see what the next three weeks hold before I make my decision," Powell said. My sources tell me Team Banks is trying to dissuade Powell from entering the race.

There is also a team quietly building behind Cameron Brewer to stand as a councillor for the Auckland Council. Brewer was unusually coy when I rang this week. After we broke the news he's leaving his Newmarket post in September, the former political press secretary seems to have attracted all sorts of media speculation, no doubt being fuelled by the man himself.

The 37-year-old is very politically ambitious, well-connected to business, and works the media to his advantage. If he launches a campaign for council, he will be relentless.