Skip to main content

In years to come the 2019 NSW Envirobank Country Championships could very well be remembered for the re-emergence of Warilla-Barrack Point as a genuine force in surf sport.

The southern club would be the first to admit they’ve endured a few lean seasons following the defection of a number of star performers to Queensland, but performance of the current crop last weekend suggests they are again on the cusp of something special.

Almost 60 competitors from Warilla made the long trip to Kingscliff Beach in the Tweed. They have returned home with an impressive third place on the overall rankings after picking a haul of individual and teams medals.

They finished well-ahead in the battle for South Coast supremacy against Kiama Downs (14th), Kiama (17th), Gerringong (18th), Nowra-Culburra (20th), Mollymook (23rd) and Shellharbour (25th) all enjoying solid campaigns.

In a weekend full of highlights it was undoubtedly in the surf where Warilla made their mark. Competitors across the field negotiated tricky conditions better than anyone bar Cudgen Headland, who had the distinct home advantage.

In the Ironman events Storm Balmain (U11), Will Fowler (U12), Harry Askew (U13), Jackson Bond (U14), and Bailey Krestevski (U15) all took first place. The U15 race in particular being notable for the club with Krestevski leading home Nathan Robinson, Callum Elliott, and Alistair Gorgijovski following close behind to finish with the first four places.

Ivy Halliwell and Tylah Richards took first and second in the U14 Ironwoman, while Montana Doubell took gold in the U12 event.

Experienced campaigners Madeleine Bakker (two gold), Jordan White and Brooke Cavanagh played an important leadership role for their younger colleagues within the team and in competition.

It was a successful weekend for Kiama Downs who finished its campaign with 13 medals. One of the star performances came courtesy of pocket rocket Miller Siasat as he streaked away to take out the U10 Beach Sprint and Beach Flags.

The excitable youngster puts his success down to a very simple philosophy.

“I just get up, run and dive,” he said when explaining how he approaches the Flag Event. In the Sprint, his strategy is similarly uncomplicated. “Dad says I should think I’m in a dark tunnel, to pretend no one is around me and all I can see is the end,” said Siasat.

Other standouts for the club were Ginger Siasat (U8 Female Flags), Mischa Boniface (U13 Female Sprint), and Cooper Collinge (U14 Male Board Riding) who all won individual events.

Kiama' with Dalton Allen (U9), Jackson Farland (U12s), Alexa Farland (U14s), and Imogen Moore (U9) also enjoyed the sand of Kingscliff beach, each bringing home medals of their own.

Gerringong SLSC showed promising signs for the future with it's club’s youngsters performing at an incredible level. 

Coco Seddon finished with gold in the Female Beach Flags, bronze in the Board Rescue, and was joined on the U9 podium by Lucy Darragh who got a silver medal in the Beach Flags.

Club mate Ethan Smith returns with a personal haul of three medals including gold in the U14 Beach Sprint and Seth Gutterson can also lay claim to being a double Country medallist as he finished with a pair of silver medals in the U11 Beach Sprint and Flags.

Mollymook SLSC also had a strong championship on the sand finishing with six medals. Olivia Greenhalgh was the club’s lone gold medallist thanks to her efforts in the U13 Female Beach Run and also picked up a bronze in the Beach Sprint.

Karla Jones won bronze in the U14 Female Flags and Beach sprint and silver racing up in the 15s division.

Club mate Arnae McKillop ensured there was more to celebrate for the club earning a bronze in the U15 Beach Sprint.

They may be one of the smaller clubs locally but Shellharbour SLSC enjoyed a productive weekend. Lachlan Cabor won gold in the U14 Beach Flags and picked up bronze in the swim for good measure while Dana Richards (40-49) took out two silvers in the Surf and Board Races.

Rounding off a stunning weekend for the South Coast Branch was Nowra-Culburra’s Chad Poland who literally was a one-man-band carrying his club to its final position on the table.

Competing in the 30-39 division, the talented all-round competitor medalled on the sand and in the surf with gold in the Ironman and added another seven silver medals to his extensive trophy cabinet.

Top Ten Overall Pointscore

  1. Cudgen Headland SLSC 1128

  2. Byron Bay SLSC 687

  3. Warilla Barrack Point SLSC 479

  4. Lennox Head - Alstonville SLSC 317

  5. Sawtell SLSC 300

  6. Port Macquarie SLSC 287

  7. Tacking Point SLSC 245

  8. Yamba SLSC 212

  9. Ballina Lighthouse and Lismore SLSC 171

  10. Cabarita Beach SLSC 163


Thursday 7 February 2019