COMEDIAN Fiona O’Loughlin knows what she won’t be doing when she comes to Bathurst later this month: going for a spin around Mount Panorama.
Two recent visitors to the city, rock legend Ian Moss and singer-songwriter Guy Sebastian, were both keen when asked if they’d be doing a lap of the Mount while they were in town.
But O’Loughlin – whose new show touches on her tumultuous recent years, which include being in a coma, appearing on reality television and giving up drinking – says she will leave the racing circuit to others.
“Not even nearly tempted,” she said. “I’m not a car person at all.”
O’Loughlin is, however, a popular figure on the Australian comedy circuit who has mined her life for laughs for years.
She won the Melbourne International Comedy Festival’s Best Newcomer Award in 2001 and has, over the years, appeared on everything from Spicks And Specks to Celebrity Apprentice.
Her recent years have been more challenging: in 2016, she was in a coma for four weeks after she was poisoned by a heater in her apartment leaking carbon monoxide.
“Yes, it was leaking carbon monoxide – but I was not in a fit state to look after myself,” she told The Sydney Morning Herald earlier this year.
O’Loughlin later had a stint in rehab and featured on – and won - I’m A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here.
Her fellow celebrities on that series included singer Shannon Noll, boxer Danny Green, former politician David Oldfield and bad boy tennis player Bernard Tomic, who made a controversial early exit.
The comedian has been to Bathurst “on a few occasions” and says the Central Tablelands landscape is what sticks in her mind.
“I remember falling hard for the countryside. Beautiful,” she said.
I remember falling hard for the countryside. Beautiful.
And though she won’t be burning around Mount Panorama – and she didn’t set herself up in front of the television for the 2018 Bathurst 1000 – she does have a car racing connection.
”I can never think of Bathurst without thinking of Peter Brock,” she said.
“I only met him once. We worked together on a TV show many years ago and, boy, did we hit it off.”
O’Loughlin will perform at the Bathurst RSL on Friday, October 26.