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As the 2019 NSW Envirobank Country Championships prepares to kick-off tomorrow, here at Surf Life Saving NSW we are taking the opportunity to profile some of those athletes striving to make their mark at Kingscliff Beach.

Like many of his peers his age Ballina’s Kelly Campbell enjoys racing in both the beach and water events, and while he has enjoyed plenty of success in both it is currently the sand where he is making his mark.

Possessing an uncanny knack of getting to the flag first as well as a blistering turn of speed this young talent is the current U12 Beach Flag Champion at the highly competitive Queensland Beach Series.

Campbell will have fond memories of his last experience at the Country Championships after winning four medals including gold in the Beach Sprint at South West Rocks in 2018.

Two of those medals were as part of a team in the water based events and while he enjoys individual success he believes teamwork and making friends is a valuable part of the Surf Life Saving experience.

The nephew of 2004 Athens Olympian and Aussie Gold Medallist David Rhodes, Kelly Campbell has not only a love for sport in his DNA but also enthusiasm for the training it takes to hone the technique that will propel him towards the finishing line at the 2019 Country Championships.

Name: Kelly Campbell

Club: Ballina Lighthouse & Lismore SLSC

Age Group: U12

Events Planning To Contest: Beach Flags, Beach Sprint, Swim, Board, and Beach Run

How long have you been involved in surf lifesaving?  I started in the 2012/2013 season in the U6 Age Group.

What do you enjoy most about being a member of a surf lifesaving club? Going away with the team and making new friends.

How has your training been going for the Country Championships? It’s been going pretty good. I train once a week for sprints and flags with our coach Nat Osmond and 3 days a week with Will Keane for board.   

What are your goals for the Championships and the rest of the season? To win gold in both the Beach Sprint and Flag events and place in the top 6 for the Beach Run.

Do you have any pre-event superstitions or preparations? Not really I just do a bit of stretching and try to get a good sleep.

What are you most looking forward to about Country Championships?  Racing at a different location and beach.

Are there any surf athletes you admire or have found to be an inspiration and why? My uncle David Rhodes. He started surf club when he was 14 and went on to win two AUSSIE titles in the Double Ski and compete in the 2004 Olympics. 

Previous Results:

QLD Beach Series 2018 - U12 Flags Champion

Interbranch Championship 2018 – 4th Beach Flags, 4th Sprints, 4th Cameron Relay

Country Championship 2018 – 1st Beach Sprint, 2nd 1km Beach Run, 3rd All Age Relay, 3rd Board Relay

Kelly Campbell works on his sprinting technique at training


Friday 1 February 2019