South Coast Athletes Impress at 2014 State Championships
The NSW Surf Life Saving Age Championships supported by ClubsNSW and staged at Umina and Ocean beaches on the Central Coast over the weekend produced another batch of team and individual state under 9 to under 14 champions.
There were plenty of tears over what was an emotional weekend for many young athletes and their parents. Tears of joy, tears of frustration, tears of anguish, tears of pain and tears of happiness were all on display.
Autumn came early to the nipper’s carnival that drew 3,500 competitors from 80 clubs along the eastern seaboard from as far north as the NSW/QLD border to Pambula in the south.
Showers over the three-day competition days made conditions hard-going for athletes and families and cut the day one program short. By Sunday’s finals the best was offered after the traditional morning march past; pleasant, dry conditions coupled with a light onshore breeze.
Heats interspersed with gold medal flag finals ran through to Saturday afternoon when the relay and individual sprint finals drew a large crowd to Ocean Beach’s sand track. On Sunday attention turned to the water for the surf and board events and the carnival highpoint, the under 14 ironman and woman.
A previous Country medalist, Kasey Ashburner (Warilla Barrack Point), had never before won a medal at state but that all changed on Sunday when Kasey charged through the competition to win a bronze medal in the U11 Swim.
Kasey is coached by Ross Day, father of Champion Nutri Grain Ironman Ali Day, who was extremely proud of his new young protégé.
“She’s a great kid, she trains so hard and deserves everything she’s got. I’m really proud of her,” said Ross with a tear in his eye.
Other South Coast medal winners include Matthew Sperring (Warilla Barrack Point) with a third in 14s Swim, Holly Abbey (Nowra Culburra) won the U11 Beach Sprint, Kyle Attard (Shellharbour) finished 3rd in the U14 Beach Sprint and the Warilla Barrack Point U14 Male Swim team who also finished third.
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