IRB Season Takes Flight

The 2016 IRB Premiership Series promises to be another nail-biter with just three points separating the top two clubs after a superb weekend of competition at Caves Beach.

The two day-event brought together more than 200 surf lifesavers and a host of supporters from around the state to watch the premier event of its type that highlights the skill and speed used by surf lifesavers when keeping beach goers safe in this famous piece of rescue equipment.

Kiama Downs (South Coast) took round one bragging rights by only three points in front of hosts Caves Beach with Sydney Northern Beaches Club Queenscliff claiming third spot in the standings.

The South Coast club continued their dominance in the Premiership from last season finishing first past the post in a number of 35+ and Open event finals.

As expected, Caves Beach weren’t far behind their main rivals with the host club claiming line honours in the U23 Mixed Tube, Open Male Tube and Female Teams.

Kiama Downs SLSC IRB Captain, Steven Guy says despite claiming the early lead in the Premiership it’s clear that the other clubs are constantly improving so they need to at their best to repeat last year’s success.

“We weren’t sure how we were going to place after finishing racing in the first round but to finish first we’re really happy with our efforts but we know there’s a lot of racing ahead,” Steven Guy said.

“Our club has a core group of veterans of the sport and the past years we would know if we had won but recently the competition is getting very close which is great for the sport.”

In other results, Queenscliff were strong in the 35+, Open and Novice Mass events while Catherine Hill Bay finished first in Open Male Mass and second in 35+ Mixed Teams and U23 Mixed Tube.

A special mention must go to the Thirroul Open Female crew who blitzed their field winning the rescue, tube and mass events.

Surf Life Saving NSW Sports Events Coordinator, Luke Stigter says competitors were thrilled to be back on the beach for the IRB racing season.

“It was great to get the season underway last weekend in the Hunter. The level of competition was very high particularly from Kiama Downs and Caves Beach who prove to be the clubs to beat this season,” Luke Stigter said.

“Caves Beach SLSC were great hosts and we thank them for their efforts as well as the officials who always do an outstanding job”.

The next round of the NSW IRB Premiership heads to Terrigal on 21 and 22 May with round three and four to be held at Birubi Point and South Maroubra respectively.

Download IRB Premiership Progressive Pointscore.

Photos from Round One can be viewed via Surf Life Saving NSW Facebook.

Photo - Kiama Downs SLSC, credit Richard Black.

Tue 10 May 2016