Paul Forst.
Paul Forst. Alistair Brightman

Forst 'quietly confident' of mayoral chances

AFTER two gruelling weeks on the campaign trail, Paul Forst kicked back and had a few quiet beers with his close friends last night to take his mind off the by-election.

Even through the last day of pre-polling, he spent some time taking a leisurely bike ride through Hervey Bay before going back to pre-poll.

Mr Forst, considered to be an underdog in the by-election, said the entire campaign has been a major learning curve.

He was the first candidate to nominate for mayor, but remained unknown until the ballot was first drawn two weeks ago.

"I'll admit I'm not a very good public speaker, and I've never had to do public forums or speeches," Mr Forst said.

"But I've taken it all in my stride."

Today, he was straight back on the road at 3am, armed with his election signs and cards to make one last pitch to the region's voters.

Despite his election campaign experiencing some setbacks, he said the challenge of campaigning for mayor hadn't impacted on his personal life or his outlook on today's polls.

Mr Forst credited his partner for keeping him grounded through the campaign and his friends that encouraged him along the way.

"I don't think I'm out of the race just yet, I'm still quietly confident I'll get over the line and be an asset to the Fraser Coast," he said.

"Tonight, I think I'll be kicking back and hopefully waiting for that phone call to announce I'm the new mayor. I'm still optimistic of what could happen."

Mr Forst, an ex-boilermaker, said some of his proudest accomplishments included developing major infrastructure for the Brisbane Airport, during a career he says took him all over Australia.

Whatever the outcome, he said he was just enjoying "another beautiful day on the Fraser Coast".