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While Mollymook and Warilla-Barrack Point both finished inside the top 20 clubs at the NSW Surf Life Saving Open Championships held in Blacksmiths Beach last weekend, it was the performance of some of the state’s smallest clubs that hints at an encouraging future for the sport.

A small but committed contingent of athletes from across the South Coast made their way to Lake Macquarie, and it was the performance of the speedsters from Mollymook on the sand that made their opponents sit up and take notice during the three-day competition.

Keeghan Norwood (U15) and Tim Burgmann (U19) both claimed gold in their respective Beach Sprints with Sam Zustovich (U15) picking up a gold in the Beach Flags to go along with his silver in the Sprint.

Burgmann also added a Flag bronze medal to his collection as did Steine Lofts who earned a bronze in the Open Male Flags.

In the Beach Relays too Mollymook performed exceptionally well taking gold in the U15 and U17 events.

The assembly line of talented water athletes from Warilla shows no sign of slowing down as the South Coast powerhouses picked up a number of medals.

Emerging Ironman Matt Sperring continued his successful summer with gold in the U17 race, while Jayde Bagnall and Cassandra Smith took out the U19 Double Ski Relay. Bagnall also picked up Bronze in the individual U19 Ski event. The Open Female Ski Relay team also ended their competition with third place on the podium.

Other strong performances from competitors in the south included Narooma’s Joseph Halsey who claimed silver in the Open Male 2KM Beach Run, and Holly Abbey (Nowra-Culburra) who took silver in a very close U15 Flags contest and was a finalist in the Beach Sprint.

The Championships ended on a high for the Far South Coast with the U19 Female Surf Boat Crew from Broulee Surfers claiming a silver medal and the Open Male Surf Boat team from Bateman’s Bay finishing with bronze.

NSW Surf Sports Manager Rob Pidgeon felt that despite a challenging start due to the conditions, the State Championships put an exclamation point on what has been another successful summer for the sport.

“I would like to congratulate everyone for what was an extremely successful Open Championships and can safely say that we were all treated to a wonderful few days of racing that while extremely competitive was always conducted in the right spirit.

“There’s a lot to like about the performance of our athletes and I think that next month’s Australian Championships is shaping up to be a big one for NSW competitors.” Mr Pidgeon said.

2017 Open Championship Club Point Score:

Newport SLSC 425

Manly LSC 343

Wanda SLSC 202

North Cronulla SLSC 174

Cronulla SLSC 144

Umina SLSC 128

Redhead SLSC 115

Avoca Beach SLSC 112

Freshwater SLSC 93

Elouera SLSC 89

The NSW Surf Life Saving Age Championships, proudly supported by Your local club returns to Blacksmiths Beach, Swansea in 2018 from Feb 24 – March 11 for another exciting year of competition.