Mount Maunganui Dominates SLSNZ Eastern Region Championships
In a spectacular display of skill and teamwork, Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service emerged triumphant at the Eastern Region Championships, securing both the Overall Club Trophy and the Eastern Region Top Club Trophy.
The event, held from 26 – 28 January at Mount Maunganui Beach, saw 725 athletes compete across a wide variety of events, including Surf Swim Race, Board Paddle Race, and the premier Ironperson.
34 Surf Life Saving clubs were involved, with teams coming from as far north as Ruakākā and as far south as Taylors Mistake in Christchurch.
Sonia Keepa, SLSNZ Eastern Region Sport Manager, said, “All of the athletes were qualified and refreshed volunteer surf lifeguards who spend hours training to be the best they can be. Seeing them battling it out at Mount Maunganui Beach was fantastic and beachgoers should be proud and thankful that they have these incredible surf lifeguards watching over them every summer.
“Mount Maunganui Beach was also the perfect backdrop for racing. This year the large craft races, including surf boats and canoes, made a return to the event which added an exciting dimension to the Championships.”
Molly Shivnan from Omanu Beach Surf Life Saving Club claimed victory in the Female Ironperson event. Meanwhile, Jayden Murphy from Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service secured the Open Men’s Ironperson title, helping his club win the top two trophies.
John ‘Spindles’ Bryant, Mount Maunganui Coach, said, “We are stoked to have won the Eastern Region Championships. Our team has worked tirelessly to claim this title, and it’s incredibly satisfying to get these well-deserved trophies back in our cabinet.
“While there were a number of incredible individual performances, the wins are a testament to the collective effort of our team. I want to thank everyone who made this event possible – the parents, beach crews, officials, water safety personnel – their dedication truly made this possible.”
The SLSNZ High Performance selectors closely observed the action with the upcoming selection of the Black Fins teams for the Lifesaving World Championships which will take place on the Gold Coast in Australia in August.
The Championships also served as a crucial testing ground for athletes as they prepare for the upcoming Oceans: Festival of Junior Lifesaving (22 – 25 February) and the New Zealand Surf Life Saving Championships (14 - 17 March). Both events will be held at Mount Maunganui Beach.
SLSNZ would like to thank the following partners who made this event possible: Tauranga City Council, TECT, Just Sheds, NES Hire, PTS Logistics, Brandt, and McLeod Cranes, Hiab and Transport Services.