The sport of Ironman
was developed in 1964 in Australia by Mr Valentine Trainor
to combine the four main disciplines of surf lifesaving
into a single race; swimming, board paddling, ski paddling and running. The sport should not be confused with Ironman triathlon
Perhaps the most famous ironman was Grant Kenny
, who in 1980 at the age of 16 made the event famous by winning the Australian Junior and Australian Open Ironman championships wdeithin the space of half an hour. Grant became a national hero, appearing on cereal boxes and television advertisements, and was seen as the pinnacle of Aussie sportsmen. The short Ironman event became famous and the centre of attention at all surf carnivals.
In the early 1980s a movie was made called "The Coolangatta Gold
", about an ironman event that required competitors to complete a 42km course along Queensland's Gold Coast. A circuit was then developed that mixed 10-minute Ironman races with the Coolangatta Gold, and a range of other professional Ironman events around Australia. The Coolangatta Gold
was resurrected in 2005. The format of the 2006 race was as follows:
In 1989 an elite group of Ironmen took the sport one step further and created the event for TV. The event was named the Uncle Toby's Super Series
and became one of the highlights of the Australian summer sports calendar.