The World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), owner of the Ironman brand, updated the ironmantexas.com website on Monday, January 10.
Five women and three men were on the list and an additional pair through Internet searches have been identified as coming to The Woodlands this spring.
Boulder, Colorado and Austin, Texas' Michael Lovato and Portugal's Pedro Gomes have listed Ironman Texas on their 2011 schedules and Lovato went as far as to comment on his blog that it is one of first half "of the season" priorities.
The five women were:
+ Belgium's Tine Deckers, who won Ironman France last summer in 9:21:29 and was third at Ironman South Africa last January in 9:29:58,
+ Montana's Linsey Corbin, who is competing this weekend at Ironman 70.3 Pucon in Chile,
+ The Netherlands' Mirjam Weerd, who finished third at Ironman Wisconsin last September,
+ Japan's Emi Shiono, who has has been to Kona the last six years,
+ Switzerland's Sarah Schuetz, who finished in 10:34:51 at Ironman Lanzarote last May.
The three men included:
+ New Zealand's Luke McKenzie, a 5-time Ironman champion whose last win was at Ironman China in March '10 in 8:41:15,
+ France's Romain Guillaume, who finished fifth at Ironman France in 8:58:56 and second in 8:49:52 at Ironman Wisconsin last year,
+ Germany's Daniel Schmoll, who was 8th at Ironman Regensburg in Germany last summer in 8:49:34.
The biggest surprise came, though, from McKenzie's schedule on his website (see image below) as he identified what has been widely rumored, but not officially announced - that the inaugural Memorial Hermann Ironman Texas would be the United States Pro Ironman Championship.