The event started off as a casual conversation between two local Coober Pedy girls, Jayde Frew & Melissa Rosewarne.

Jayde’s initial idea was to run 35km to the Breakaways from Coober Pedy as a personal challenge. Melissa suggested that the run could raise money for a good cause.

Knowing that Tanya Lauder had been fundraising for a new playground, the chat between the two girls soon evolved into the idea of a marathon style fundraising event.

The whole community came together to make donations and provide sponsorships to raise funds for the new playground.

Early September 2009 became the target for the event, coinciding with Father’s Day. It was changed to May in later years for more favourable weather conditions.

Originally known as the Great Breakaway Bolt, the concept became a council driven initiative. In 2018 it was taken over by the Kanku-Breakaways Co-Management Board as an opportunity to raise awareness about the cultural connection Aboriginal people have to the area.