Superman? Ironman? No, Ultraman is the new test of endurance
THE number of ways athletes can test their physical limits on the Sunshine Coast will grow by one more next year when the Noosa area hosts a three-day 514km endurance race.
Ultraman Oz from May 9-11 will be Australia's first ultraman endurance race and the world's fifth.
The first was held in Hawaii in 1983 and spawned similar events in Canada, the United Kingdom and Florida.
Ultraman is so testing that competitors must have their own support crews.
The Noosa event will comprise a 10km swim from the Noosa Heads Surf Life Saving Club and a 145km ride on day one.
Athletes will ride an epic 275km through the hinterland on day two.
Those still standing will finish with an 84km run starting from Noosa Surf Club.
Entries will open next month and successful applicants will be advised in June.
Race director Tony Horton is working closely with police, council and other authorities. He already has 70 applicants who want a spot in the 40-person field, about 30% of them women.
"You have a different breed of culture. That is what makes this special," he said.
Triathlon and ironman specialist Stephen Gage, of Twin Waters, is keen.
"I'm probably looking for a new challenge," he said.
Mr Gage and his wife, Danielle, recently returned from New Zealand where their team of four finished third in a multi-sports adventure race, Godzone, where they covered 500km in seven days on 14 hours' sleep.
Mr Gage said a three-day race "where you get to have a good night's sleep in a bed every night" seemed favourable in comparison.
He lost feeling in his big toes during Godzone and the numbness is only starting to wear off three weeks later.
He will need fully functioning feet to compete in the Blackall 100, a 100km run taking in the Great Walk in the Mapleton State Forest on November 8-9.
When: May 9-11, 2015
Day 1 - 10km ocean swim departing from the Noosa Surf Club, followed by 145km ride
Day 2 - 275km ride through the Sunshine Coast hinterland
Day 3 - 84km loop run, starting and finishing at Noosa Surf Club including a run through the National Park