The Australian duo of Chris McCormack and Craig Alexendar, who between them have won the past four Ironman world championships, will compete in the Abu Dhabi triathlon next month.
More than 1,500 athletes from 48 countries have signed up for the March 12 race.
McCormack won last year’s world championship in Kona, Hawaii, and also won in 2007. Alexander won in 2008 and 2009.
The Abu Dhabi course will include a 3km swim, a 200km bicycle ride and 20km run for the professional division, which will pay US$250,000 (Dh918,000) in prize money.
Defending champions Eneko Llanos of Spain and Julie Dibens of Great Britain are also among the 45 athletes entered in the elite division.