If you are a triathlete, there is no bigger day in this sport than the Ford Ironman World Championship. It is the race that defined our sport as it came of age, and continues to be the defining race in our sport for any avid triathlete.
To get to the starting line in Kona, you must either be very lucky and get yourself a spot through the lottery, or very talented, and win yourself a qualifying spot at one of the qualifying events held around the world.
Tens-of-thousands of triathletes try to get one of those coveted Ironman spots every year. Only 1,700 succeeded.
That means 1,700 "lucky" people get to test themselves on one of the biggest challenges the sports world has to offer ... 2.4-miles of swimming, 112-miles of biking, and a 26.2-mile marathon run through tough ocean waves, and challenging lava-covered terrain.
While there are thousands of triathlons around the world, it is this one that truly defines the sport. It was this race, first run in 1978 as a dare by a bunch of Navy Seals that put triathlon on the world's sporting map. It is triathlon's Super Bowl, Wimbledon, World Series, World Cup, and Tour de France all rolled into one. What makes this event so unique is that "average" people get to compete alongside the best in the world.
Ford Ironman World Championship
2.4 mi. swim • 112 mi. bike • 26.2 mi. run
By Qualification Only