It’s the dream goal for many age-groupers: Get a coveted ticket to the Ironman World Championship. But qualifying is no easy task—according to research done by Runtri.com’s Raymond Britt, a 29-time Ironman finisher, there are now about 61,000 Ironman entrants racing for 1600 slots, with faster finish times and fewer roll-down spots.
To help you reach that goal, we’ve used Britt’s research (current at press time) to rank Ironman races by how “easy” they are to qualify at. We say “easy” because you’ll notice that some of the best places to qualify at are the most difficult races. Britt took many factors into account, given the complicated nature of each event—for instance, Germany may have 100 slots, but the average qualifying time is faster.
By no means are these lists perfect, and you may have plenty of questions—What about weather? DNFs? New 2012 races?—but we hope it will spur discussions about the easiest route to get you to the Big Island.