Rush Australia 2023 winner Hamish Collins not only won bragging rights as the first-ever series champion but has also walked away with a cool $100k and two first-class tickets around the world.
Now, the 29-year-old has revealed that he had no idea what he was in for when he signed up for the show.
“Production was incredible, very tight-lipped,” Collins admitted. “Essentially, we were on the tarmac with Dave [Genat], where he explained to us the rules of the game and how it was going to work. We didn’t even know we were going to be in teams. We had no idea about that.”
The Christmas tree farmer also “had no idea that there was an element of voting each other out or that there was going to be strategy [involved]. We were thrown into the unknown, which I absolutely loved. I thought, yeah, this is going to get better and better.”
In fact, the only thing they had seen before filming was a 30-second clip of the show, which was originally called Globetrotters.
“It was like, ‘Get ready to go on a global adventure’. And they just showed beautiful places around the world, an adventure of a lifetime. That was it. I was more than happy that I didn’t need to know anything.”
As for his experience during the series, going from sensory deprivation and being dropped in these incredible places was amazing for him.
“You’ve got no idea what’s happening,” he admitted. “And then they’ve got music and the noise cancelling headphones so you can’t hear anything and then just as they do on the episode, it goes ‘Drop in t-minus 20 and you hear the countdown in the headphones. It was just phenomenal.”
What Hamish Collins will do with his prize money
While the adventure was certainly “once in a lifetime” — being dropped into some of the world’s largest cultural festivals at someone else’s expense — the prize pot has also been life-changing, and now, Collins wants to give back.
“I had so many once-in-a-lifetime opportunities through this show,” he said. “Travelling, that’s living my dream, so I will be donating some of it to charity. I’ll be donating to the Make a Wish Foundation because I’d love to use that money to make others’ dreams come true.”
Collins also admitted that he would use some of the money on student debt since he’s just completed his MBA, as well as taking his partner and family on holidays. But there was one other person he couldn’t leave out of the gifts.
“Most importantly, my grandma has been a big driver of why I love to travel,” he said. “She’s done so much travelling in her life and she’s just about to turn 97. I will take her out for a very special memorable lunch.”
Stream all episodes of Rush 2023 on 9Now.