A new local body group in Auckland backed by the National Party has confirmed a head-on contest with a veteran centre-right councillor.
Auckland Future will field two candidates in the city's North Shore ward, pitching them against the former North Shore mayor George Wood.
Mr Wood has previously stood on a National Party-aligned ticket, but has declined to sign a fiscal pledge being promoted by Auckland Future.
It's putting up sports administrator Fay Freeman and local body member Danielle Grant.
The new group hopes to win a majority of the council's 20 seats, but has signed only one sitting councillor so far.