Open Athletes Have Eyes On The Prize

The wait is nearly over for the best surf sport athletes in NSW as they make their final preparations for the 2017 Australian Championships that get underway on the Gold Coast tomorrow.

With no World Championships in 2017, this year’s Aussies will be the finale to what has been another scintillating summer of surf sport competition.

Over 1,700 NSW athletes from all across the state will be making the journey competing in disciplines of Beach, Water, and Boat events.

Aside from what promises to be an exciting competition, friendships will be renewed and stories told in what promises to be a fantastic event that highlights the very best aspect of Surf Sports.

After an intriguing battle at the recent State Championships at Blacksmiths Beach in Lake Macquarie there will be many NSW athletes entering this week’s 5-day-competition confident of adding a National medal to their resume.

Professional Iron competitors, Olympians, Australian and NSW Representatives, emerging stars, and loyal club competitors – the athletes attending this year’s championships come from a diverse range of backgrounds but they all have two things in common; a passion for Surf Life Saving, and a competitive desire to always give their best.

From the Central Coast Ski Paddlers Lachlan Tame, Riley Fitzsimmons (Avoca Beach), and Umina’s Jemma Smith and Rachel Wood will all be out to continue their solid efforts from State.

Isak and Lily Costello, Daniel Collins and Justin McMorland (Redhead) have their eyes set on their favourite events, while Angela Leadbeatter (Swansea Belmont) has high hopes on continuing her solid run of form that has netted her eight NSW titles in the 2KM Beach Run.

The Illawarra and South Coast clubs will be hoping to continue their strong run of form with Jordan White and Matt Sperring (Warilla) and Jazmine Yew (Thirroul) and Tim Burgmann (Mollymook) out to continue their impressive run on the sand.

Sydney and Sydney Northern Beaches will be well represented at The Aussies with Newport fielding an incredibly strong team that includes Laura Shorter, Georgia Miller, Hannah Minogue, Katie Williams, Mitchell Trim, and Max Brooks among others.

Full of confidence after their stirring win in the Men’s Open Taplin at State, Manly will be confident of a strong showing on the Gold Coast. They too have a strong side with Kendrick Louis, Nathan Smith, Naomi Scott, and Emily Doyle to be many who will be pulling on the blue cap.

North Bondi’s Lizzie Welborn has enjoyed another successful summer and she too along with the sprinting powers from the Bate Bay Clubs Chloe Mannix-Power (Cronulla), Alex Rampoldi (North Cronulla), and Michael Hanna (Elouera) are likely to be in contention for finals and ultimately medals.

NSW Surf Sport Coordinator Luke Stigter is confident that the NSW contingent will give a good account of themselves when competition gets underway.

“NSW competitors have traditionally performed very well when they travel to the Aussies, and if the results of our State Championships are anything to go by I’m sure we will again have a very successful event.

“This is the time when all the training and hard work throughout the year pays off, and I would like to wish all our competitors the very best of luck,” Mr Stigter concluded.

The 2017 Australian Open Surf Life Saving Championships will be held on the Gold Coast from March 29 – April 2. Further information can be found at The Aussies Hub

Tue 28 Mar 2017