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Canterbury Awards Of Excellence Winners Announced

Louis Clark - Sportsperson of the Year

Canterbury’s Surf Life Saving New Zealand clubs have celebrated a successful patrolling season and year of achievements.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand’s Canterbury Awards of Excellence winners were announced on the Southern Region’s Facebook page from Friday July 3 with the winners’ booklet released on Sunday July 5.

The awards honour the volunteers who dedicate numerous hours to being on patrol, keeping their club running behind the scenes, and dedicated lifesaving sport athletes who have shone in competition.

The Canterbury awards recognise Surf Life Saving Clubs at Nelson, Rarangi, Buller, Kotuku, Waikuku Beach, Spencer Park, Waimairi, North Beach, New Brighton, South Brighton, Sumner and Taylors Mistake.

Southern Regional Manager Stu Bryce says volunteers throughout the Canterbury area are keeping people safe at the beach – both during patrols and behind the scenes.

“The Awards of Excellence are a great opportunity to acknowledge their efforts and say thank you. But it is also worth remembering these people honoured are just a reflection of the wonderful volunteers in our organisation.”

Mike Smith has been named Volunteer of the Year in recognition of his involvement at a club, regional and national level, particularly in the Health and Safety sector.

“Mike’s service to surf is decades old and it is people like him who are the backbone of the sport and the service side of lifeguarding.

Louis Clark is the Sportsperson of the Year, after the Taylors Mistake Surf Life Saving Club athlete represented the Junior Black Fins at the International Surf Rescue Challenge in Durban, South Africa in 2019. He returned home to compete at the 2019 New Zealand Pool Rescue Championships, where he won the U19 Male 200m Swim With Obstacles and placed third in both the U19 Male 100m Rescue Medley and 50m Manikin Carry.

Back at the beach, Louis won the U19 Male Board Rescue alongside Ben Regan, and placed second in the U19 Male Rescue Tube Rescue with Ben, Jacob Clements and Zach Goldsmith.

“Louis excelled in the local and regional pool and beach events winning both the Open and U19 run swim run and surf races at the Southern Region Championships,” says Stu Bryce.

Luke Smith, Club Development Officer for Christchurch, was named Lifeguard of the Year.

Steven Drabble from South Brighton Surf Life Saving Club has been recognised with the Outstanding Contribution to Surf Life Saving award.

He’s been involved in revamping the Canterbury Development Squad for athletes to further themselves as a more holistic athlete rather than just turning up to train, as well as being one of the main contributors in creating the Southern Challenge – which won Innovation of the Year.

Steven has also had a successful season as a competitor, collecting three medals at the TSB Nationals Surf Life Saving Championships 2020 in Gisborne in March, including a gold in the open men’s double ski, for which he and his partner, Zac Quickenden, are the winners of the Sport Team of the Year.

Surf Life Saving NZ Awards of Excellence are held every year in each SLSNZ region to recognise and celebrate the many club members putting in considerable time, effort and skills at a grass-roots level to make sure Kiwis who head to the beach get home safe.

The regional awards culminate in the National Awards of Excellence which will be held on September 19.

CANTERBURY Awards of Excellence 2020 Winners


Regional Service Awards

Brendon Ferguson – Rarangi Surf Life Saving Club

Mike Litten – Waimairi Surf Life Saving Club

Neil Watts – Rarangi Surf Life Saving Club

Mary Seelan – Nelson Surf Life Saving Club

Distinguished Regional Service Awards

Anthony Nunnick – Taylors Mistake SLSC

Craig Jamieson – Taylors Mistake SLSC


Canterbury Championships

Top Junior Club – South Brighton SLSC

Top Senior Club – Sumner SLSC

K-Day Awards

Black and White Trophy – Sumner SLSC

F.D. Kesteven Cup Winner – South Brighton A

Oliver Turpin Trophy – South Brighton SLSC

The Giants Eye Trophy – South Brighton SLSC

Southern Region Pool Rescue Championships

Top Junior Club – Waimairi SLSC

Top Senior Club – Sumner SLSC

Overall Top Club – Waimairi SLSC

Southern Regional Junior Championships

Overall Top Club – South Brighton SLSC

Southern Regional Championships

Overall Top Club – Taylors Mistake SLSC

Top Surf Sports Awards

Top U14 Competitor

Top U14 Pool Competitor

Top U16 Competitor

Top U16 Pool Competitor

Top U19 Competitor

Top U19 Pool Competitor

Top Open Competitor

Top Open Pool Competitor

Surf Official of the Year

Lance Cleeve - Waimairi Surf Life Saving Club

The Shanks Family Event Guard of the Year

Zavian Fletcher – New Brighton Surf Life Saving Club

Coach of the Year

Dave Smith – Taylors Mistake Surf Life Saving Club

The Leon “Flash” Peters Team of the Year (large craft)

Waimairi Surf Life Saving Club Open Women’s Canoe Crew

(Caitlin Ruddle, Maddie Dawe, Kim Hendrie, Carly Keys)

The Allen Lee Top Canterbury Team of the Year

South Brighton Open Men’s Double Ski

(Steven Drabble, Zac Quickenden)

Te Onepoto Award for Junior Surf - Service

Dean Le Warne – North Beach Surf Life Saving Club

Te Onepoto Award for Junior Surf - Coaching

Danielle Currie – South Brighton Surf Life Saving Club

Sports Person of the Year

Louis Clark – Taylors Mistake Surf Life Saving Club

Outstanding Contribution to Surf Lifesaving in Canterbury

Steven Drabble - South Brighton Surf Life Saving Club


Innovation of the Year

Southern Challenge


Rookie Lifeguard of the Year

Noah Fanene – Sumner Surf Life Saving Club

Rescue of the Year

Spencer Park Surf Life Saving Club / Waimairi Surf Life Saving Club

V.S.E Trophy Regional Lifeguard of the Year

Jake Simpson, Sumner SLSC

Beach Education Instructor of the Year

Jade Jeffrey, Sumner SLSC

Instructor of the Year

Kirsty Cullen – New Brighton Surf Life Saving Club

Lifeguard of the Year

Luke Smith – Taylors Mistake Surf Life Saving Club

Volunteer of the Year

Mike Smith, Taylors Mistake SLSC

Patrol Club of the Year

Waikuku Beach SLSC

Club of the Year

Sumner SLSC

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