ctive duty military personnel will have the opportunity to qualify for the big Kona race at three races around the world.

Ironman today revealed the qualifying process for its newly-announced military division at the Ironman World Championship. Active duty military personnel will have the opportunity to qualify for the big Kona race at three races around the world.

The Ironman Military Division is open to amateur active duty Military personnel, regardless of country, gender or branch of service. For the purpose of determining eligibility, Ironman recognizes the following branches of military service: army, navy, air force, marines, coast guard and military police in countries which delineate their military police force on equal status as their active duty military service (e.g. the Carabinieri in Italy). Military veterans, reservists, retirees and National Guard personnel are not eligible to compete in the Ironman Military Division.

Active duty military athletes have the opportunity to qualify for the 2015 Ironman World Championship, which is set for Oct. 10, at three global events: the half-iron distance Superfrog Triathlon, which took place on Sept. 28, 2014; the Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship in Melbourne, Australia taking place on March 22, 2015; and the Ironman 70.3 European Championship in Wiesbaden, Germany taking place on Aug. 9, 2015. The Military Division will include age group categories of 18-29, 30-39 and 40+ and will crown a male and female champion for each Military Division age-group.

Slot allocation and roll down for Military athletes will be conducted in conjunction with age group athlete slot allocation at each Ironman event. The upcoming Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship in Melbourne and the IRONMAN 70.3 European Championship in Wiesbaden will each offer 10 Military Division qualifying slots.

Ironman’s military ties date back to the inaugural event in 1978. The Ironman World Championship was created by U.S. Navy Commander John Collins and his wife Judy and the first race was won by U.S. Navy Communications Specialist Gordon Haller. The runner-up spot at the inaugural event went to U.S. Navy Seal John Dunbar, while third that day went to U.S. Marine Dave Orlowski.

“We are honored to provide the opportunity for military athletes to compete among themselves at the Ironman World Championship in a global Military Division,” Andrew Messick, Chief Executive Officer for Ironman, said in a press release. “Since our inception, we have had a special tie to the military. We look at the Military Division as a way for Ironman to recognize the men and women who risk their lives promoting safety and security throughout the world yet still have the drive to train and compete.”

RELATED: Leon’s Triathlon To Host U.S. Armed Forces Championship