Introducing the Speakers at the FREE 2020 Kokoda Challenge Expo!

28 Feb 2020

So, you’ve signed up for the 2020 Kokoda Challenge? You’re excited, you’re ready to take on the challenge but you’re probably feeling a little apprehensive too and are unsure of what to expect, especially if you’re a first-timer. Which is exactly why we are hosting a FREE Kokoda Challenge Expo; to give you and your team all the tips and tricks to make it to the finish line. Here’s what our speakers will cover;


Kelly McDonnell – Event Director at Kokoda Youth Foundation

Kelly has been a busy body organising everything for the challenge and therefore is a great person to clarify any of your questions. She will go through the Brisbane and Gold Coast courses, provide all the details on how to stay on track and things to be aware of while you’re participating. Join her during these session times:

10:00 am  -  Room 1

1:00 pm  -  Room 1


Scott Whimpey – First Aid Essentials and Feet Strapping

Scott Whimpey from First Aid Accident & Emergency has seen it all from both sides of the event; as a competitor and as a first aid provider, he has been involved with the Kokoda Challenge for 12 years. Scott has won the 96km event 4 times with his fastest time (and our current record) a staggering 11 hours 20 minutes, set with team Nike Hammer. Scott’s proudest achievement is finishing with a team of 4 in every challenge so far. Scott will be presenting on the topics of:

  • First Aid and Injury Management
  • Blister management
  • ITB management
  • Sharing his experience on the basics of nutrition, training and team psychology

Scott will also have some special packs for First Aid, ITB strapping tape and blister tape for sale on the day! Join him during this session time:

10:00 am  -  Room 2


F45 Strength Training – Train and Fuel Your Body

F45 will explain the importance of strength and conditioning training to supplement your hiking training. They will also discuss the right food to fuel your body and get over the finish line! Join them during these session times:

10:00 am  -  Room 3

10:45 am  -  Room 3

12:15 pm  -  Room 2


Caine Warburton – Training Program: Finish the Kokoda Challenge

Caine is one of Australia’s TOP ultra-distance athlete’s as well as a performance running coach. Having recorded 45 podium finishes from 54 career race starts which also included winning the Kokoda Challenge 96km in 2013. As a result, Caine has an extensive wealth of training and endurance knowledge to share with the Kokoda Community and help you prepare for the gruelling event! Join him during these session times:

10:45 am  -  Room 1

12:15 pm  -  Room 1


Sharyn Sutton – Support Crew: Becoming a Winning Support Crew

Sharyn has been involved with the Kokoda Challenge since 2008. She has completed the challenge 4 times, was a former leader in the Kokoda Challenge Youth Program in 2014 and has walked the Kokoda Track in Papa New Guinea.

In other years, Sharyn has been a part of a support crew or a volunteer at checkpoints. She will be presenting the ins and outs of being an effective support crew, how to look after your competitors, rest times, expectations for and from your athletes and what you should pack in your support crew boxes. Join her during these session times:

10:45 am  -  Room 2

10:45 am  -  Room 2


Steve O’Keefe – Tips and Tricks from a 96km Finisher

We're SO excited to have Steve O'Keeffe from SOK Images host a workshop at our upcoming expo! Steve not only is a past participant of the 96km event but he is also our fabulous photographer! If anyone knows the event and has seen absolutely everything there is to see out on the track its Steve!

Are you a first time competitor? Come along to hear all Steve's leanings and advice from his vast experience. He'll be covering: what worked and what didn't, training strategies, fundraising tips, getting your food and equipment right, how to prepare your support crew and most importantly... what is your WHY!

If you're participating for the first time in 2020 this will be a must-attend workshop! Join him during these session times:

11:30 am  -  Room 1

1:00 pm  -  Room 2


Casey West – Teacher: Advice for Schools and Students

2020 will be the 13th consecutive year St Andrews Lutheran College has been involved in the Kokoda Challenge. For the past 3 years, Casey has been coordinating the Kokoda Program at College with the priority of ensuring the students and leaders wellbeing is maintained through the journey and all the teams finish as a team of 5.

 She has personally competed in both the Gold Coast and Brisbane Kokoda events and in the past two years have won the Stan Bisset and Jim Stillman Cups with my St Andrews teams. 

Presentation points:

  • Why we believe Kokoda is so important for our students
  • Where to start (building teams, finding leaders, supporting parents)
  • Training ideas
  • Managing training, school work and team issues
  • Getting students mentally prepared
  • Preparing support crews and students for checkpoints

Join her during this session time:

11:30 am  -  Room 2

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