It’s All In The Family For Cronulla Lifesavers
For one Cronulla family the recent State Masters Championships at Ocean Beach – Umina meant more than just the medals. It was a rare opportunity for mother and daughter to race together before they turn their full attention to training for September’s World Lifesaving Championships.
All in all it was a successful carnival for Cronulla’s Emma Larssen. She competed in the 30-34 Female Surf Race, Rescue Tube (where she won a bronze medal), and Beach Sprint and picked up another bronze in the 130 Years Surf Team Race teaming up with her mother Carole and fellow club member Anna Cox.
But it was her efforts alongside her mother in the 30-34 Board Rescue that really got her noticed. In what was a highly competitive event the duo almost managed to nab a bronze medal only to be relegated to fourth during a frantic finish.
The pang of disappointment didn’t last long though (they are lifesavers after all and the competitive fire still burns bright) and minutes after the race you couldn’t wipe the smile off the pair’s faces as they reflected on an enjoyable few days at the State Titles.
“It’s nice being able to compete with my daughters even if I have to compete down several age groups to do it. There’s not too many sports where you can do that so I really enjoy being able to do it,” said Carole Larssen.
“That’s one of the great advantages of lifesaving as you can stay involved with a club for as long as you want to. I’d love to encourage other parents to team up with their kids as it is a positive experience.
“It’s definitely still a physical sport but I find it is really good for fitness as well.” For her part Emma said working closely with her mother does provide advantages.
“I love being able to compete with my mum it’s a good feeling and it means I never have to look too far for a partner.
“I think that’s what is great about the sport and especially at Masters level. It’s a really relaxed environment and while it’s always nice to win it’s a lot more relaxed and it’s a very social experience where you get the chance to catch up with people you’ve known and raced over the years,” she said.
The Larssen family have had experience competing together before with the pair teaming up alongside older sister Kari at the 2014 World Lifesaving Championships in France. Later this year they’re hoping to again compete on the international stage in the Netherlands.
“I would like to give a shout out to my older sister as it was her birthday during the Championships like it always was when we were growing up so she’s probably used to it now! “She wasn’t able to get the time to compete at State this year but hopefully she can join us on the beach again really soon,” Emma Larssen concluded.
Photograph - Emma and Carole Larssen are all smiles on the final day of the 2016 NSW Surf Life Saving Masters Championship (above) and (below) are pictured with Anna Cox with whom they picked up a bronze medal.
Thu 17 Mar 2016