However, we all know Ricky Gervais’ punching bag in cargo shorts is a whinging Pom.
In Hindu mythology, the Indian festival of colour, or Holi, as it’s known, is a positive day of celebration, symbolising the end of winter and the beginning of spring.
It is this philosophy that the organisers of the Swisse Color Run took on board when they decided to transport the most vibrant 5km race on the planet to Australia this year.
“The Hindu Holi festival, with its tradition of throwing colour to welcome spring was absolutely an inspiration for the founders of The Color Run,” explains Luke Hannan, national manager of Australia’s very first Color Run.
“Along with a range of other events encouraging happiness, positivity and celebrating life.”
The Color Run (which began in the US, hence the spelling of colour) arrived in Australia last month, with the first race in Melbourne a huge success.
The event only really has two requirements: wear white clothing. And, secondly, be completely plastered in colour at the finish line of the race.
As the website says, runners will “look like they fell into a Willy Wonka tie dye vat of colored goodness. We are the creators of an all new paint race phenomena!”
This concept began in the US in January and has ran through 60 cities across the country.
At the start of the race (which isn’t at all about racing – or winning), each runner must wear white, and as they pass each kilometre, they are sprayed by people armed with mustard bottles of colour.
“The phenomenon started in the US when event founder and keen triathlete and runner Travis Snyder launched The Color Run,” explains Hannan.
“It’s a day out with fun, health and happiness at its core, providing a chance for serious runners to share their passion with family and friends. It really is the happiest 5km on the planet!”
And while Mr Pilkington might have you worried about safety, the organisers of the race have ensured the colour blasting is completely safe.
The blue, yellow, orange and pink ‘paint’ is actually coloured powder –100 per cent natural, safe food grade corn starch.
The Melbourne event last month event sold out within weeks of being announced with a 12,000-strong crowd of runners, all dressed in white running gear who completed the 5km course around Flemington Racecourse.
Over 3,000kg of powder was doused over runners.
The inaugural event was actually the first time a Color Run has been held out of the US and raised money for the Celebrate Life Foundation for the Australian Paralympic Committee.
And, if you’re less about racing and more about colourful revelry, the event has a Finish Festival for all race-goers with music, activities and a mass group throws of colour powder.
The run is sponsored by Swisse who are known for their vibrant celebration of a fit and healthy life. As they put it, “Swisse celebrates life every day, the Australian-first event is the perfect fit.”
Sydney gets its chance to paint the town on February 10th, followed by Perth on February 17th.
Because the Sydney event sold out almost immediately, there are plans for another mass colour fest on August 25th at Centennial Park.
And, while unconfirmed at the time of print, rumour has it that event organisers are extending registrations for the sold-out Sydney event due to the over-whelming love for the event and ongoing requests to extend the field.
If you’re not keen on running, or even walking, but are enthusiastic about throwing corn starch on strangers, the Color Run is looking for volunteers.
As Hannan says “anything from people distributing participant kits, throw, squirt and launch colour at the runners.”
Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out about all of the colourful opportunities.
The Color Run returns to Sydney on Sunday August 25, 2013 at Centennial Park.
Stay tuned to The Swisse Color Run Australia’s Facebook page for details. See: facebook.com/TheColorRunAustralia