The small Canary island of Lanzarote is limbering up for its major sporting event of the year. Lanzarote Welcomes Iron Man 2009As over 1300 competitors descend on the island for what is billed as the toughest triathlon in the world. The Lanzarote Iron Man. With a top prize of 50,000 dollars up for grabs along with 60 coveted slots in the Iron Man Grand Final in Hawaii.

The event takes place on May 23rd and competitors have to complete a gruelling course which encompasses a 3.8km swim, a 180km bike race and then a 42.2km marathon. It usually takes the front runners around nine hours to complete the course. Whilst many never even make it to the finishing line.

Image by doug88888 under Creative Commons.