Building on the success of the 2019 festival, the ITU Triathlon World Cup race and the WIL Sport NZ Schools Triathlon Championships will be held at Ngamotu Beach next March.

Entries are now open for the event with competitors aged 16–85+ from across New Zealand expected to compete.

Interim CEO of Triathlon New Zealand Jen Gregory says age group athletes will race their national championships on a stunning and challenging course.

"This is delivered by a team that consistently delivers world-class events."

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It is expected that over 500 athletes from across the country will participate.

Medals and places to represent New Zealand in the 2020 Edmonton World Championships in August next year will be up for grabs.

For the competitors aged 11 and above, the Taranaki Tri-er offers the chance to have some fun and race hard at a shorter distance.

The National Sprint Triathlon Championships have been held in Kinloch, Lake Taupō for many years and it's a significant coup to bring them to Taranaki.

The event has been welcomed by Venture Taranaki, the region's development agency, as an addition to an already action-packed triathlon event.

Venture Taranaki Chief Executive Justine Gilliland says it's a fantastic opportunity to showcase all that Taranaki offers.

"As well as inspiring racers of all ages to train and race alongside a world-cup event, it gives a taste of what it's like to compete at the top level, right here in Taranaki."

Returning for a second year, the Mellowpuff Trust Fun-run will provide an energetic break in the day's racing.

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Spectator entry to all events across the day is free, including the ITU Triathlon World Cup racing on the Sunday says Event Director, Shanelle Barrett.

"This event is about the community, with the athletes immersing themselves in the local region," Shanelle says.

Taranaki Tri Festival is supported by Venture Taranaki, TSB Community Trust, WIL Sport, Port Taranaki, Sport Taranaki, Plymouth International and the wider community of Taranaki.

■ Entries are open now for all events at the Taranaki Tri Festival on Sunday March 29. Visit www.taranakitrifestival.nz for more information.