Taupō is in the race to host the 2020 Ironman 70.3 World Championship.

The Ironman organisers' choice is now between Perth, Australia and Taupō, New Zealand as the 2020 host.

Taupō-based Sam Warriner, New Zealand's most successful female triathlete, has spent her life racing around the world and said Taupō had a clear edge over Perth.

"With Busselton you've got sharks in the sea, it is very, very hot, too humid and there's lots of sandflies," Warriner said.


"You don't get any of that here. You get clean fresh air, you get a view of the lovely mountain, the water temp is perfect at that time of year and it's clean living."

Warriner says Taupō's most important quality was the community which would really welcome the athletes.

And most importantly, it was easy to get around, she said, whether you need to walk to the Ironman headquarters or go for a practice run.

Taupō events manager Steve Giles has been leading the charge to bring Ironman to the district.

He said hosting the event would put Taupō on the world stage and generate 60 per cent of Taupō's annual event income.

"Five thousand athletes, 90 per cent of them international. We're expecting a length of stay between seven to eight nights," GIles said.

"Total economic impact? We're predicting around $19 million, our events industry within Taupō annually is worth about $35m."

Giles said Ironman events were in this community's DNA.


"This is our Olympic Games of sport, Ironman is synonymous with Taupō, we've played host to the New Zealand Ironman for the last 20 years.

"New Zealand Ironman is the oldest Ironman in the world outside of Kona [Hawaii], it turns 35 in Taupō next year. This is who we are, it's in our blood."

Taupō Mayor David Trewavas said the town was ready for the event.

"We have the people, we have the skills, we have the template," Trewavas said.

"We'll be drawing on all the expertise in New Zealand to do this event so it's going to really put us on the map.

"Ironman officials are visiting the nominated cities this week, and if selected, the local workforce is ready," Trewavas said.

This year's Ironman 70.3 event would be held in South Africa, and in 2019 would head to France.

The announcement for the 2020 host was expected to be made in early September.

Made with funding from