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A scintillating season on the beach where he achieved success both at home and abroad has propelled Newport’s Jake Lynch to the honour of Surf Sport Athlete of the Year at the 2017 NSW Surf Life Saving Awards of Excellence held in Sydney last weekend.

The talented beach sprinter made history far from home last September when he became the first Australian to win the Sprint/Flag double at a World Life Saving Event and was also a member of the Beach Sprint Relay team that took out silver.

His successful Dutch odyssey continued as he also claimed the gold medal in the World Interclub Challenge wearing the familiar cap of Newport.

During the domestic summer Jake managed to combine both disciplines achieving outstanding results in both.

In the Summer of Surf Series he won the point-score in the Sprints and finished second in the flags, while at Blacksmiths for the State Championships he scorched home to win the Open Sprint and was then part of the Newport Relay team that beat all comers.

In the Australian titles he walked away with a bronze in the Flags and was a finalist in the Sprints before an untimely muscle strain ended his day.

“It’s been a good season all round and to win this award was unexpected and a real honour,” said Jake Lynch.

“Competing for Australia is a totally different feeling. I mean you compete for your club week in and week out but to pull on that Aussie cap is an amazing feeling. You really are aware that you’re representing your country and representing everyone who has worn that cap before you. It’s the highest honour you can get in Surf Life Saving.”

Away from the track Jake has been a constant presence on the beach coaching Newport’s younger athletes and has helped develop tailor made programs for those in the program. One of his charges who has coached over the last few years Macy Carrouthers went on to win her own Australian gold in the U15 Beach Flags at the Aussies.

Generous with his knowledge he has also volunteered his time at development programs so that other beach athletes can benefit from his experiences, and is very much looking forward to next season.

“We’ve got a lot of good athletes coming through Newport at the moment we’re looking forward to next season. It’s all about slogging it out at training and getting ready for competition,” he said.

The 2017 SLSNSW Awards of Excellence are proudly presented by Stramit Building Products. Over 300 of Surf Life Saving’s most outstanding lifesavers, athletes, educators, coaches, and administrators from around the state gathered at Sydney’s iconic The Hilton Hotel to celebrate the season that was.


Wednesday 9 August 2017