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A strong Central Coast contingent returned from the NSW Surf Life Saving Championships at Blacksmiths Beach happy with their weekend’s work, but undoubtedly keen to improve when they travel to Western Australia for a crack at the Australian Titles next month.

The big three heavyweights of Umina (equal 7th overall), Avoca Beach (11th), and Terrigal (14th) all impressed with some solid results during the three-day competition, helping Central Coast clubs to a return of 49 medals.

Leading the way for Umina were the club’s Champion Lifesaver representatives with Mollie Murphy (U19s) and Kirsten Miller (U17s) both claiming gold.

Also enjoying the ultimate success was the U15 Mixed First Aid Team, while the U17 teams claimed second and third places in their division. Other team wins were the U19 Surf Race Team, the U19 Female Board Relay and Board Rescue teams, the Open Rescue Tube Rescue team, and Jemma Smith secured an individual win in the U19 Single Ski. Unfortunately the defending Open Female Taplin team of Jazmyn Rodwell, Jemma Smith and Rachel Wood had to settle for bronze after being pipped by Newport’s A and B teams. Jemma had a heavy schedule across both U19 and Open water events, and bagged bronze in the Open Ironwoman and teamed up with sister Bronte for a bronze in the U19 Double Ski event.

Avoca Beach’s Ella Beere (Open Female Ski) was the club’s lone individual gold medallist, while the U19 Taplin team of Keeley Booth, Lily Cracknell, and Emma Livingstone combined to storm home for the win.

Bailey Johns picked up two silvers in the U19 Ironman and Surf Race before adding to his tally with a bronze in the U19 Ski Relay, while Lily Cracknell completed her medal haul with silvers in the Female Ski Relay, Rescue Tube Rescue Race, and U19 Board Race. The Avoca Men’s Open Surfboat team narrowly missed out on upsetting the reigning champions Bulli, instead walking away with a hard-won silver medal.

Terrigal claimed gold in the Open Male Rescue Tube Rescue Race and silver in the Female event, with other strong performances including Rachelle King (Over 24 Restricted Swim 2nd place), and Sophie Holiday who finished third in the U15 Beach Run. The U17 girls picked up a silver in the Surf Belt Race and the Open Men’s Board Relay team finished with a bronze. Tamsyn Gould and Keaton Pollington both gained second place in the U15 Male and Female Champion Lifesaver events.

It was another successful event for James De Vries (Shelly Beach) who managed to finish with three medals. The talented teenager defended his title in the U19 Male Surf Race, in the process winning the Saxon Bird Memorial Trophy for a second time. This award is highly prized among competitors in the U19 age group as it honours the memory of the young lifesaver who died in 2010.

De Vries then teamed up with Alex Chaffer to win gold in the U19 Board Rescue before teaming up with Bailey Cook, Thomas Lennox, and Chaffer again to finish with bronze in the Rescue Tube Rescue race.

Rounding off the medal winning efforts from Central Coast clubs were the three bronze medals coming home to Ocean Beach SLSC.

Bradyn Todhunter finished third in the U17 2km Beach Run, the U15 Male Beach Relay team are now officially state medallists, while Zara Smithers and Jenna Styant successfully teamed up for a third-place finish in the U15 Rescue and Resuscitation competition.  

NSW Surf Sports Manager Rob Pidgeon said it was a highly successful competition contested at Swansea Belmont for 2018.

“I would like to congratulate everyone for their efforts over the last three weekends of competition. We’ve seen some extremely close and exciting finishes and the weather and conditions have allowed us to showcase the very best of surf sports in NSW,” said Mr Pidgeon.

“The volunteer team from Swansea Belmont have hosted another fantastic event, with great support from Lake Macquarie City Council,” said Rob Pidgeon.

2018 Open Championship Club Point Score

  • Newport SLSC (553)

  • Manly LSC (247)

  • Wanda SLSC (221)

  • North Bondi SLSC (204)

  • North Cronulla SLSC (198)

  • Cronulla SLSC (196)

  • Umina SLSC (144)

  • Redhead SLSC (144)

  • Elouera SLSC (134)

  • Coogee SLSC (118)

The NSW Surf Life Saving Championships, proudly supported by Your local club will return to Blacksmiths Beach in 2019 for another exciting edition of the state’s largest surf sport event.


Thursday 15 March 2018