Daniela Ryf and Javier Gomez will look to defend their titles—but they'll face tough competition from former champions and new faces.

Daniela Ryf and Javier Gomez will look to defend their titles—but they’ll face tough competition from former champions and new faces.

Several of triathlon’s top names will travel to Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa for the 2018 Isuzu Ironman 70.3 World Championship on Sept. 1 and 2. The 70.3 World Championship, which started rotating locations on an annual basis in 2014, will take place in Africa for the first time this year.

The race also started a new tradition in 2017, with the women and men competing in completely seperate races on different days. The format was a huge success and returns for 2018. The women will open the competition on Saturday, Sept. 1 and the men will follow on Sunday, Sept. 2.

Women’s Race
Switzerland’s Daniela Ryf has managed to balance the demands of racing both the 70.3 and Ironman World Championships, with three titles in each, and she’ll look for that same success in 2018 as she enters each race as the undisputed favorite. She’ll face off against last year’s runner-up Emma Pallant (GBR), two-time Ironman 70.3 world champion Melissa Hauschildt (AUS), multiple 70.3 World Championship podium finisher Heather Wurtele (CAN), and several other top athletes.

The women’s field includes several top names, but with several up-and-comers—like 2018 70.3 North American champion Paula Findlay (CAN)—it also looks primed to see a new face on the podium.

Men’s Race
On the men’s side, an equally determined group will seek to win this year’s title with two-time 2016 Ironman 70.3 world champion Javier Gomez (ESP) returning to defend his crown. Jan Frodeno (GER), who spent much of his upbringing in South Africa and was the 2016 Ironman 70.3 world champion, is coming off impressive victories at 70.3 Oceanside to start the season, along with a win at the Ironman European Championship in July. American hopeful and 2016 70.3 World Championship runner-up Ben Kanute (USA) makes a return to the field to vie for another podium spot. Joining for his first attempt at an Ironman 70.3 World Championship title will be two-time Olympic gold medalist, Alistair Brownlee (GBR). Capping things off is last year’s fourth place finisher Sam Appleton (AUS), who has had a strong 2018 campaign including a victory at Ironman 70.3 Santa Rosa.

See the complete start lists below.

Women
1 Daniela Ryf (SUI)
2 Emma Pallant (SUI)
4 Sarah TRUE (USA)
5 Melissa Hauschildt (AUS)
6 Jeanni Seymour (RSA)
7 Helle Frederiksen (DEN)
8 Anne Haug (GER)
9 Heather Wurtele (CAN)
10 Amelia Watkinson (NZL)
11 Lisa Huetthaler (AUT)
12 Alicia Kaye (USA)
14 Imogen Simmonds (SUI)
16 Pamella Oliveira (BRA)
17 Fenella Langridge (BRA)
18 Sarah Lewis (SUI)
19 Paula Findlay (CAN)
20 Agnieszka Jerzyk (POL)
21 Maria Czesnik (POL)
22 Romina Palacio (ARG)
23 Ellie Salthouse (AUS)
24 Liz Blatchford (AUS)
25 Anna Eberhardt (HUN)
26 Lotty Harari (PAN)
27 Kirralee Seidel (AUS)
28 Felicity Sheedy-Ryan (AUS)
29 Michaela Herlbauer (AUT)
30 Annah Watkinson (RSA)
31 Magda Nieuwoudt (RSA)
32 Heini Hartikainen (FIN)
33 Laura Mathews (USA)
34 Radka Vodickova (CZE)
35 Kerry Morris (AUS)
36 Anne Basso (FRA)
37 Bruna Mahn (BRA)
38 Barbara Riveros (CHI)
39 Jenny Fletcher (CAN)
41 Danielle Dingman (USA)
42 Sylvia Gehnboeck (AUT)
43 Lucy Charles (SUI)
44 Kyra Wiens (USA)
45 Jackie Hering (USA)
46 Sonia Bracegirdle (NZL)

Ben Kanute and Javier Gomez both return for 2018. (To maybe drink more champagne from their shoes?) Photo: Patrick Smith/Getty Images for Ironman

Men
1 Javier Gomez Noya (ESP)
2 Sam Appleton (AUS)
3 Jan Frodeno (GER)
4 Rodolphe Von Berg (USA)
6 Michael Weiss (AUT)
7 Ben Kanute (USA)
8 Mauricio Mendez Cruz (MEX)
9 Ruedi Wild (SUI)
10 Maurice Clavel (GER)
11 Braden Currie (NZL)
14 Justin Metzler (USA)
15 Andreas Dreitz (GER)
16 Pieter Heemeryck (BEL)
17 Santiago Ascenco (BRA)
18 Kenneth Vandendriessche (BEL)
19 Sven Riederer (SUI)
20 Yvan Jarrige (FRA)
21 Igor Amorelli (BRA)
22 Adam Bowden (GBR)
24 Elliot Smales (GBR)
25 Fernando Toldi (BRA)
26 Alistair Brownlee (GBR)
27 Marcus Herbst (GER)
28 Ivan Tutukin (RUS)
29 Emilio Aguayo Munoz (ESP)
30 Paulo Roberto Maciel Da Silva (BRA)
31 James Cunnama (RSA)
33 Alex Libin (USA)
34 Filipe Azevedo (PRT)
35 Felipe Van de Wyngard (CHI)
36 Tim Rea (AUS)
37 Adrian Haller (SUI)
38 Arnaud Guilloux (FRA)
39 Ryan Fisher (AUS)
40 Horst Reichel (GER)
42 Kieran Roche (AUS)
43 Mark Buckingham (GBR)
44 Alan Carrillo (MEX)
45 Nicholas Kastelein (AUS)
46 Markus Rolli (GER)
48 Max Neumann (AUS)
49 Johann Ackermann (GER)
50 Albert Moreno Molins (ESP)
51 Michael Raelert (GER)