For 34-year-old Tama Cooper, taking out the title of Mr Waimarama 2018 was a win for all dads in the Hawke's Bay region.
The Havelock North man took to the stage with confidence, proudly declaring he was a father-of-three, and soon heard his name called out as the male winner of the Waimarama Beach Day's beauty competition.
While admitting he hadn't intended entering Mr Waimarama, he said he was pleased to win on behalf of all local dads.
"It's mainly to show the dads out there that we can still do it and to show my kids that I can do it. When I look out there at the beach today, a lot of dads put all their time and effort into their kids and don't take time out for themselves.
"To keep their own hauora, their own wairua and self-belief. Hopefully I can show them that [with] an hour a day you can stay in shape and stay positive."
Mr Cooper only recently returned to his roots in Hawke's Bay after living in Sydney, and is due to start his new job at Te Aratika Academy today.
He grew up in Hawke's Bay, attending Havelock North High School, and played rugby for the region before he left for Australia, aged 19.
When one of his sons, 11-year-old Jonah, was asked if he was pleased his dad had won the title of Mr Waimarama he said he was surprised.
"I thought he'd come second or third, not first."
Mr Cooper said he had been a cross-fit coach for five years now, exercising for one hour every day, and tried to eat well to maintain his physique.
His mother, Cheryl-Dawn Scott, was cheering loudly for him from the side of the stage during the competition and shrieked with joy when his name was called out as the winner.
"I'm so proud of him. I forgot to take a video of it because I was so excited. It's just so fun and he really didn't expect to win it. He's so unassuming."
Mr Cooper was joined by Sam Cunningham, second place, and Will Druzianic, third place, on the stage yesterday afternoon as a crowd of hundreds cheered for the region's top blokes.