A field of more than 1300 participants from over 50 countries will take part in the 32nd Ironman New Zealand in Taupo on Saturday March 5.

The Kellogg's Nutri-Grain Ironman New Zealand was the first International Ironman event established by the owners of Ironman Hawaii. Today it is one of 39 global events - each comprising a 3.8km swim 180km bike and 42.2km run - that qualify participants for the annual Ironman World Championship in Hawaii.

It is New Zealand's biggest and richest annual international one-day sporting event, with the elite professionals racing for an approximate prize money of NZ$80,000 as well as important qualifying points while age groupers will vie for titles as well as 65 qualifying spots for the 2016 Ironman World Championships in Hawaii.

There are 180 triathletes from the Auckland area participating in Taupo alone.