Manly LSC Dominate 2014 NSW Age Championships
Manly LSC has maintained its reputation as the premier junior surf sports nursery in the state at the 2014 NSW Surf Life Saving Age Championships supported by ClubsNSW with the club winning its fifth overall point score title in as many years.
In the Under 8s to Under 14s age brackets, the other surf clubs on the peninsular are a long way behind with Collaroy (12th), Newport (14th), Queenscliff (15th), North Curl Curl (16th) and Freshwater (19th) the only other clubs to finish in the top 20 in the state.
The weather conditions were challenging on the opening day of competition with athletes, families and volunteer officials copping a drenching in eerily similar circumstances to day one of the 2013 competition but the weather retreated and the young stars put on a great show with a stack of inspiring performances.
Manly pair, Andrew Newling and James Curl, have melded into a formidable combination after four years racing and training together in the U14s Board Rescue.
The duo are once again NSW Champions after holding off Sydney rivals Elouera and Newport on a final dash to the finish line as all three teams rode the same wave. “The adrenaline was pumping in those last seconds especially since Newport beat us in the same race at the Branch Championships,” said Andrew.
The pair won the same race in 2012 and finished second in 2011.
Manly’s Naomi Scott was able to defend her ironwoman title in the last year of competing at a junior state title. A little runner to the beach on the final board leg gave Scott and Umina’s Mimi Henderson an equal chance at clinching the prized medal.
“We were on the same wave, lucky I could get my feet moving,” Scott said. “It was a tough race, there weren’t many waves to catch. Mimi is a really good board paddler so my plan to get out in front early.”
Scott’s second gold medal came in the under 14 board race.
Next weekend she’s competing up at the open state title both in the Under 15 individual events and as part of the same board relay team that finished with bronze medals at the age championship.
After a tough year, Jonah Gerritsen and Logan Kaye of Queenscliff SLSC finally had a stroke of luck in the U12s Male Board Rescue after the leaders, Swansea Belmont, fell off on the home stretch gifting the Queensy boys a gold medal. This comes after the pair were favourites but had to withdraw in the final hour at the Branch Championships when Logan (who is allergic) got stung by a bluebottle.
Collaroy SLSC won the prestigious March Past event.
Starting next Friday Umina and Ocean beaches will again fill with tents and the sound of starting guns and cheering when the Central Coast hosts the third of four consecutive championship weekends, the NSW Open state title, March 7-9, 2014.
Top 10 Overall Point Score:
1.) Manly LSC - 291
2.) Avoca Beach SLSC - 248
3.) Wanda SLSC Inc - 162
4.) Elouera SLSC - 152.5
5.) Swansea Belmont SLSC - 143
6.) Bronte SLSC - 135
7.) North Cronulla SLSC - 120
8.) South Maroubra SLSC - 101.5
9.) Coogee SLSC - 84.5
10.) Terrigal SLSC - 83
Tue 4 Mar 2014