Supercharged sports master Petty Officer Kristian Weldon lead the charge this week to promote physical training with a difference through HMAS Cairns's first 'Amazing Race'.
The Race combined departmental Physical Training with monthly sport and truly had it all. Giveaways and prizes were used to tempt the hapless contestants as they manoeuvred through Cairns base and surrounding streets in the central business district.
Petty Officer Weldon said he use to be involved in the Adventure Racing community.
“We would compete for an hour chasing hidden clues all over the suburbs. We would include trail running, bush and street orienteering and rogaining. I thought this would be a good way to give the Navy guys here a chance to experience it.”
Petty Officer Weldon's cryptic clues, along with an unmarked map of the region were the sole providers of assistance as teams of sailors put their heads together and walked, hopped, skipped, ran and even swam to each checkpoint.
The eclectic combination of a physical fitness challenge paired with the navigational element tested the compatriots, proving too much for one team who ended up 2km away from the furthest boundary.
The water hazard was another great mind-boggler with competitors scouring the bottom of the Cairns pool to top up their points tally.
With the winners being the team who collected stickers from the most number of checkpoints, severe penalties for not finishing within the 90 minute time limit decimated several of the race hopefuls.
In the end, the hot-footed and quick-witted Leading Seaman Matthew Dinte and Able Seaman Daniel Szabados were the winning combination. Completing the 7km loop in a mere one hour and fourteen minutes, the boys were able to put their feet up and be the first the sample the bacon and egg burgers that shipmates had sizzling on the hotplate that morning.
To maintain their winning edge for their next race, the boys have won racing shirts from the Cairns Navy Canteen - to help them run that little bit faster.
Petty Officer Weldon said the event went very well and very smoothly.
"It great to add in a water checkpoint which was a chance for personnel to cool off.".
The morning was enjoyed by all participants who look forward to competing in similar events in the future.