A COWBOY from Tamworth in NSW's north east has stepped into a tough new arena, as a competitor on The Amazing Race Australia.
Jackson Dening, 23, and his mate Brendon Crawley, 25, have been on the trip of a lifetime, exploring parts of Australia stretching from the Daintree to the desert, as part of the re-vamped television show.
Known as 'The Cowboys', Jackson and Brendon said they're keen to sit down with their families on February 1 and watch their "mugs" take over the telly.
"The high point for me was just getting picked ... we could go on there and try to do something our boys can watch when they get older and represent the cowboys in the right way," Jackson told the Leader.
"We forgot a lot of things that we said and did so I think it will be funny and really interesting to see what we actually said and did."
Brendon and Jackson both said no matter what trying tasks were thrown at them - from trapeze challenges to wrangling cane toads - the hardest part was what they were missing back home. Both the boys had young baby boys waiting for them.
"We wanted to go out there and be ourselves, we're just a couple of blokes from out in the country, we both rodeo and we ... wanted to do it for the young cowboys growing up and set a good example," Jackson said.
The team remained tight-lipped about what challenges they had to take on, and what the end results were.
"I think we had hundreds of thousands' worth of experiences, the stuff we got to do and the people we met and the things we did it was just incredible and you don't ever forget that," Jackson said.
"You go from the physical to the strategic and it's changing all the time, you don't know what's going to get thrown at you but you just have to adjust."
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The all-Aussie edition was filmed during COVID-19, but the blokes said staying within the borders worked out well.
"I've always wanted to see all of Australia and fortunately we were given the opportunity to do so and there were places and the sights we saw and the people we met, it was incredible," Brendon said.
The first episode of The Amazing Race Australia will air on Network 10 at 7:30pm, on February 1.