Ironman Louisville 2009 triathlon kicks off Sunday with almost 3000 athletes from over 20 different countries.

The favorites to win the 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike and 26.2-mile run course this year are Luke McKenzie from Australia and Raynard Tissink from South Africa.

The event serves as an official qualifier for the Ford Ironman World Championship, taking place on Saturday, Oct. 10, in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

Click here to watch live Ironman Louisiville 2009.