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It was a successful weekend for the Mid North Coast team at the 2017 Interbranch Championships held at Stockton Beach near Newcastle recently.

Mid North Coast finished 9th overall but had a number of very encouraging performances which bodes well for next year’s Envirobank Country Championships to be held on more familiar territory at South West Rocks in February.

One of those who enjoyed a fantastic hit out was Port Macquarie’s Jaydn Rossiter who took gold in his Beach Flag event.

“I was focusing really hard on getting the flag and coming through for the win. I’ve been doing a lot of training,” said Rossiter who is in his third year representing Mid North Coast at Interbranch level.

“It’s been a great experience to train with the team and what I wanted to do was to prove to myself that country clubs can compete just as well as the bigger city clubs,” he said.

Finn Askew from Tacking Point SLSC was feeling good about representing the Branch in his first year in the U17 Youth category, winning the Surf Race with an awesome run up the beach from the water.

“It felt good to get the win,” said Finn Askew. “This carnival is mostly about the team so it’s great to compete with my mates from other clubs too.”

Ty-Jesse Byrant was also a star performer for the team, winning the U14 Board and leading the juniors in the team water events.

Team Manager Mel Cockshutt and Coach Richard Broomby were very happy with the team’s efforts across the weekend.

“We’ve had our best beach results at an Interbranch Champs and three wins in the water makes it even better, even though we’ve got 10 less competitors than the other branches,” said Mel Cockshutt.

The Mid North Coast branch runs a pathways program across clubs, which has been getting good results.

“Because we don’t have deep talent in a lot of our clubs and most are quite small, as a Branch the pathways concept has been good,” said Cockshutt. Richard Broomby manages the coaching aspects and anyone is welcome to participate.

This season the Lower North Coast Branch again took full advantage of the draft rule implemented in recent years to give smaller branches a chance at fulfilling their quota of athletes.

Choosing the right person is a skill and the Branch was looking for a role model who could work with their younger athletes.

For the second year Sydney’s Michael Kember answered the call with the veteran beach athlete relishing the chance to compete at a representative level again and winning the Open Beach Sprint.

“It was great to be drafted again and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the coaches for having the faith in me, and hopefully I repaid them with a win in the sprint.

“It was definitely a tough race out there and a challenging track – that’s beach sprinting though, it’s the same for everybody,” he said.  

The NSW Director of Surf Sport, Don van Keimpema, thanked the Stockton club and the Hunter Branch for hosting the Championships this year and congratulated all the athletes, team managers, coaches and officials for their efforts.

“We’re hoping to build this event to be one of the premier events in the state. The team environment we had this weekend was absolutely fantastic,” he said.

The venue for the 2018 Interbranch Championship is Black Head SLSC on the Lower North Coast to be held on 8-9 December 2018. 


Tuesday 19 December 2017