Are we mad for obstacles?
Mixed online feedback a hard knock for event
THE Whitsundays’ first obstacle-based event Obstacles Gone Mad! is now done and dusted yet the reactions are mixed.
Airlie Beach’s Mark Bennett was the first local to cross the finish line on Saturday, shortly after a Townsville man.
There were five and 10km tracks available, plus a children’s course.
Groups were dressed as superheroes, robbers, crazed ballerinas, minions and “gold diggers”, and there was plenty of fluoro and war paint too.
By the end of the day, about 650 people had participated.
Many complained on social media the event was “poorly organised” and had too few water stations.
But event organiser Shane Elisara said most of the feedback was positive.
“Our single focus was to give everyone a good time. We did everything possible to get it [the event] up here and make it happen,” he said.
A woman was injured attempting an obstacle and was taken to Proserpine Hospital.
Some partakers accused the team of having no medical staff onsite but Mr Elisara assured a paramedic was there, saying “accidents happen”.
Some participants were disappointed they didn’t receive the t-shirt and water they believed were included in the ticket price.
“The truth behind the whole thing was that we had to make executive decisions to make the event happen,” Mr Elisara said.
“We were at the stage of deciding where we could finance the event, but we got it over the line by key decisions. One of them was giving out medals over t-shirts. We thought the general public would prefer a medal.”
Mr Elisara said the track met health and safety regulations but he had taken onboard feedback about the lack of water stations.
“You can never have too many water stations,” he said.
“We do our best. Some people drink more than others. We actually added an extra water station on the day.
“I will look into recommending hydration packs at future events. ”
Mr Elisara was thankful for the “overwhelming support” the event received from the council, Whitsundays Marketing and Development and local businesses.
He said he would love to bring the event back to the region and hoped the community welcomed it back.
“The truth behind the whole thing was that we had to make executive decisions to make the event happen” – Shane Elisara
TRUE GRIT: Mark Bennett went back for round two at Obstacles Gone Mad! Whitsundays on Saturday morning.