North Coast Athletes Dominate at Country Champs

Surf Life Saving athletes from the North Coast made a solid impression at the 2014 Stramit NSW Country Championships held at Mollymook Beach from January 17-19.


Sawtell sported a small but very strong team with Lauren Dam taking home a hoard of medals. Originally a beachie, Lauren caused multiple upsets when she showed off her skills both on the sand and in the water.

At the conclusion of the Carnival Lauren scooped up Gold in the U17 Board Race, U17 Beach Flags, U17 Beach Sprint, U17 Beach Relay, Open Beach Relay, Open Female Double Ski, Open Mixed March Past, U17 Single Ski Relay and U19 Single Ski Relay. She also took Silver in the Open Beach Sprint, Open Rescue Tube Rescue and U19 Rescue Tube Rescue events and Bronze in the Open Beach Flags.

“It’s been a really great carnival for me and for Sawtell SLSC. Even though we’re all friends I love beating the girls from the bigger clubs like Byron and the Country Champs give us all another opportunity to compete at the highest level,” said Lauren.

Team mates Jess Moore and Jayden Morgan were screaming with delight at their victory in the Open Double Ski race.

“I left absolutely everything I have in me out there, I have nothing left,” said Jess.

“It’s our first Carnival paddling together and we have only done two training sessions so we are so happy with the result,” added Jayden.

Jess also secured gold in the Open Beach Sprint and U19 Beach Sprint.

Other notable Sawtell performances were Kevin Clancy winning the 60+ Beach Sprint and Finn Klinkers taking out the U9 Board Race. Sawtell also took out the prestigious Senior March Past.

Coffs Harbour

Coffs Harbour sported a strong team once again finishing fifth in the overall pointscore.

Jessica Carah had a great weekend taking out the U19 Single Ski, U19 Surf Race and securing Silver in the U19 Ironperson.

“It took 8.5 hours to get here but I am really happy to travel to other areas and see other beaches. The South Coast always comes up to us so it’s only fair that we come down,” said Jess.

The water is a lot colder down here and there is a lot of movement making it a bit challenging. The Ironwoman was unfortunate but that’s surf and I made it up for it with two gold’s after that,” she added.

Sister Madeline also had an impressive weekend securing Gold in the U17 Ironperson.

Other notable Coffs Harbour performances include Ethan Hart who took out the U8 Beach Sprint and U8 Wade, Hayley Fischer who won the U10 Beach Flags and Beach Sprint, Sophie Ryan in the U11 Beach Flags, Sean O’Reilly who won the U14 Ironperson, Jonah Mitchell taking out the U15 2K Beach Run and Jedd Mitchell in the U19 Beach Flags.

Coffs Harbour teams were also awarded Gold in the U13/14 Board Rescue, U13/14 Cameron Relay Team, U10 Mixed Surf Team, U15 Male Board Rescue, U17 Male Board Rescue and U10 Mixed Beach Relay.


U15 up and coming competitor Tahlia Kollen surprised everyone when she took out the Ironperson and Surf Race and secured Bronze in the Board Race.

“It’s hard to see the cans out there, I actually got off course and had to loop back around but I managed to stay in front.”

I don’t normally do that well at Carnivals but this year I have been training extra hard so I was more confident going in to the races,” said Tahlia.

Tahlia has been training six times a week with 85 year old surf coach John Mills, grandfather of Brooke Hanson.

Tahlia travelled to Mollymook with sister Nicola with Urunga fielding a team of just five competitors.

Overall Pointscore (Top 20)

1 Byron Bay SLSC 882.5
2 Warilla Barrack Point SLSC 665.5
3 Cudgen Headland SLSC 556
4 Shellharbour SLSC 462
5 Coffs Harbour SLSC 297
6 Tacking Point SLSC 295
7 Sawtell SLSC Inc 262
8 Port Macquarie SLSC 256.5
9 Mollymook SLSC 220.5
10 Broulee Surfers SLSC 147
11 Wauchope Bonny Hills SLSC 131
12 Lennox Head - Alstonville SLSC 118
13 Moruya SLSC 93
13 Nowra-Culburra SLSC 93
14 South West Rocks SLSC 83
15 Salt SLSC 79
16 Ballina Lighthouse and Lismore SLSC 78
17 Yamba SLSC Inc 74
18 Batemans Bay SLSC 62
19 Black Head SLSC Inc. 59
20 Gerringong SLSC 54

For full results please visit the NSW Stramit Country Championships event page.

The 2015 Stramit Country Championships will be held on the 16th-18th January (2015) at Mollymook Beach.

Mon 20 Jan 2014