Shane Jones' debut as a NZ First candidate has seen him go in at eight on the party's list - a list which has just three women in the top 15.

NZ First has just released a list of 56 candidates which has leader Winston Peters at the top and deputy Ron Mark at number two.

The first non-MP candidate is Mark Patterson at seven. Patterson is a - a farmer from Lawrence and NZ First's candidate in Clutha Southland who was once a National Party supporter.

Tracey Martin is at three and sitting MPs Fletcher Tabuteau, Darroch Ball and Clayton Mitchell are next.


Shane Jones said he welcomed his ranking at number 8 - "it's Chinese for good luck."

"When you come into politics in a return as I do, the acid is on you to establish your credibility by doing the heavy lifting in a place like Whangarei. Anybody who believes they should get a cushy entrée coming back into public life is not in the real world."

He said he had not lobbied Peters or any of the board members about his list placing.

"I was just utterly confident that I'm a performer and quality would shine through."

Peters said it was an "excellent position" for Jones to be in and higher than some current MPs.

Asked for the reasons for Prosser's move down the rankings, Peters said a panel decided on the list based on a "comprehensive evaluation."

"He can come back in easily because we'll do much better than the projected polls and what we are getting now would see him come back in easily."

He said the list showed there was succession planning.

"It's nationwide, it goes from Invercargill to Kaitaia, there are some seriously talented people involved. Every party thinks about succession but unlike other parties, we don't have that every second year."

Jones has been tipped as a potential successor for Peters.

Jones will get back into Parliament on New Zealand First's current polling. Richard Prosser is the lowest ranked sitting MP at 15 - below three non-MPs.

Jones is standing in the Whangarei electorate but a recent Q+A Colmar Brunton poll of Whangarei voters showed he was well behind the incumbent, National's Shane Reti.

Reti had 42 per cent support while Jones was on 24 per cent.

Two other newcomers from Northland are also set to get into Parliament on the list.

They include Jenny Marcroft, a broadcaster who has worked with Tracey Martin and is involved with Ngapuhi settlement talks and David Wilson, who was chief executive regional economic development agency Northland Inc and is standing in Te Atatu.

Prosser is the biggest loser from the party's 2014 list when he was ranked at three.

For Prosser to get back into Parliament, NZ First will have to get about 11.5 per cent which is likely on current polling.

Jones will get in at about six per cent.

Other than Mark, who is now deputy leader and has moved from nine to two, the biggest winner was first term MP Darroch Ball who has moved from 10 to 5.

The top 25 on the list

1. Rt Hon Winston Peters
2. Ron Mark
3. Tracey Martin
4. Fletcher Tabuteau
5. Darroch Ball
6. Clayton Mitchell
7. Mark Patterson
8. Shane Jones
9. Jenny Marcroft
10. Mahesh Bindra
11. Pita Paraone
12. Ria Bond
13. Denis O'Rourke
14. David Wilson
15. Richard Prosser
16. Jon Reeves
17. Stu Husband
18. Andy Foster
19. Melanie Mark-Shadbolt
20. Helen Peterson
21. Rob Stevenson
22. Lisa Close
23. Jamie Arbuckle
24. Josh Hubbard
25. Talani Meikle