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Ironman: Top NZ triathletes ready to tackle Australia's best at Asia-Pacific championship in Cairns

The 12-time NZ Ironman champ will be hunting his second regional title.

Camweron Brown Credits: Photo - Photosport; Video - Newshub

New Zealand's leading triathletes are primed and ready to take on Australia's best on the eve of the Ironman Asia-Pacific Championship in Cairns.

Among the Kiwis on the start-line is 12-time Ironman NZ winner Cameron Brown, who has given his first indication on when he may finish up, after completing more than 70 events.

For the Ironman legend, Cairns has almost become a second home.

"I've been here 6-7 times and done a lot of training," Brown tells Newshub. 

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He’s finished on the podium there three times, including victory in 2014, and just three weeks out from his 49th birthday, Brown is still as committed as ever. 

"I still have fun and I still enjoy it, which is the main thing," he says. "If I didn't enjoy it, I wouldn't do it." 

Brown’s big goal is cracking the half century. 

"I want to be a professional until I'm 50," Brown says. "I'll probably, maybe hang up my shoes then, but that's still over a year away.”

Taupo Ironman runner-up Mike Phillips has been creative in chilly Christchurch conditions, as he prepares for Sunday's gruelling event.

"I've got a little sauna at home and it's been pretty cold, so I'm just trying to adjust that way," Phillips tells Newshub. 

More than 3000 athletes hope to make it to the finish line in the 10th edition of the Cairns Ironman. 

Kiwi Amelia Watkinson who is determined to defend her women’s crown.

"I like that pressure, that's what being a world class athlete is all about," Watkinson says. "On paper, I would give myself the confidence that I'm the best athlete with my results behind me." 

The Kiwi athletes competing in Cairns hope to put themselves back on the map on the international circuit, after months of COVID-19 isolation.

Watch the full story above. 

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