THIS year’s Ironkids event could be a record breaker as more than 2,200 children compete in Bolton Town Centre on Saturday.

Victoria Square is the venue for Ironkids 2014, a pre-cursor to the adult Ironman challenge taking place the following day.

The fun event will be promoting an active, healthy lifestyle in Bolton, with youngsters aged 3-15 participating in a range of sporting events, including triathlon, aquathlon and running races.

It attracted around 2,000 children last year and is already set to surpass that figure.

There are also events taking place in the Market Place shopping centre for the whole family.

Nikki Wilson-Cook, centre manager, said: “We’re proud to welcome Ironkids to Market Place, as events like these encourage young people to make positive lifestyle choices by staying active and eating healthily. We’ve been blown away by the number of athletes taking part and I wish all contestants the very best of luck.”

At Market Place, families are invited to go head-to-head with a selection of sporty challenges organised by Virgin Active and David Lloyd, who will be bringing fitness machines into the centre.

The centre is also hosting a family competition, with the chance to win £50 of store vouchers in a ‘Dad vs Food’ challenge. Contestants must eat one 2ft long “Olympic-sized” marshmallow and the dad who finishes in the quickest time possible will be crowned winner. Game will be setting up Wii consoles featuring a selection of sporting games, including bowling, golf and boxing.

Across Market Place’s main mall, giant outdoor games will be set up, and smaller sporting fans can take to the bouncy castle in the main mall of the shopping centre and attend a Mad-Hatters Tea Party at the Ironkids pre-registration area.