Local man Mark Rafferty is heading to Germany to take part in the Frankfurter Sparkasse Ironman European Championships

Aura employee Mark takes on his third Ironman triathlon with the hopes of qualifying for the world championships in Hawaii

Aura employee Mark takes on his third Ironman triathlon with the hopes of qualifying for the world championships in Hawaii

Mark faces a 3.8km swim, 180.2km cycle and 42.2km run.He is hoping to do better than his previous time of 10hrs 13mins.

Participants in the competiton are divided into age groups that span five years. The top athletes then have the chance to go on and compete at the world championships in Hawaii. Mark said he would love to get there but doesn’t want to think about it too much in case he jinxes himself.

Mark will have a maximum of fifteen hours to complete the race, organisers have also stipulated that participants have a maximum of 2 hours 20 minutes from the start to complete the swimming portion of the race, that the first bike lap must be completed by 1pm on the day of the race and that the cut-off time for the finish line is 10pm meaning that anyone who finishes after this time will not be acknowledged as having finished the race.

The race takes place in the countryside near Frankfurt in Germany. The swimming portion of the race takes palce on the Strandbad Langener Waldsee a recreational lake. During the bike portion of the race, competitors will get to travel through downtown frankfurt. while the final section of the race takes participants along the banks of the river Main.