March 17-23, 2024: Issue 618


2024 NSW Surf Life Saving Masters State Championships

Palm Beach SLSC’s Diane Van Ooi, Annabelle Chapman and  Fiona Rae - Gold!

Although North Bondi SLSC is the NSW Surf Life Saving Masters Champion club for a second straight year, claiming the title just days after defending their Age Championship at Queenscliff beach, SLS SNB Branch Masters have also excelled in this year's Surf Life Saving New South Wales State Championships.

The Sydney club has made a habit of success on the peninsula and did so again over the 2024 NSW Surf Life Saving Masters Championships.

They just squeezed past neighbours, Bondi Surf Bathers LSC who finished second, while Manly LSC rounded out the podium ahead of Shelly Beach SLSC on the Central Coast.

Only seven points separated one and two by the end of the day, showing just how tight the contest was, right down to the final event.

Competitors contested a team’s package on the second of the two-day Championships on 14 March, with cascading waves making for tricky and at times breath-taking races across three highly active water zones.

Port Macquarie kicked off their day with a win in the 130 Year Female Taplin, with Debra Bartlett, Raelene Myers and Sara-Jane Oakeshott taking gold ahead of the teams from Bondi SBLSC and North Avoca SLSC.

Later, in the 170 Year Female Taplin, Palm Beach SLSC’s Fiona Rae, Annabelle Chapman and Diane Van Ooi were winners – much to the surprise of Diane who wasn’t aware she was in the lead for the final swim leg.

Diane, who fellow Palmy Members state is half fish, also won Silver in the 60+ female Surf Swim and points for PBSLSC in the 60-64 yrs Female Rescue Tube Race.

On Day One of the Masters Fiona won Gold in the 55-59 yrs Female Ironperson, and Gold in the 55-59 Female Single Ski, with Lise Layard of Mona Vale SLSC's Masters taking the Silver, Jo-anne Dryden from Stockton the Bronze and Manly's Jo-Ann Carmichael gaining points for her in 4th. 

In the 55-59 yrs Female Board Race Lise secured the Silver, Fiona Rae the Bronze with Wamberal's Colleen Harrison winning the Gold. Fiona then won Silver in the 55-65 female iron person, while Janet Proudfoot, Newport SLSC, came in just outside the medals, adding points to Newport's Masters tally. Janet was in every Final for the 55-59 yrs Female Board, Ski and Surf Race.

The Palm Beach Masters girls confirmed in January they are heading to the 2024 Australian Surf Life Saving Championships, the Aussies, which will be held on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, at Alexandra Headland SLSC, Maroochydore SLSC and Mooloolaba SLSC from 13 to 21 April. Mona Vale and Newport also send a strong Masters Team each year as well.

Lise, Fiona and Colleen

Staring into the near-blinding sun when competition began early in the morning on 13 March, Mona Vale SLSC’s Kristyn Monnock was among the women who navigated somewhat tricky surf conditions the best on her ski, picking up a win in the 50-54 Female category.

The Warriewood Sandmen took Gold again this year in 200 yrs min Male Beach Relay- congratulations Iain Archer, Glen Bauder, Adam Gee and Ben Hargy. Adam also won the Silver in the 50-54 yrs Male Beach Sprint.

Warriewood's Adam Gee

Also on the track, Warwick Cavanagh from North Cronulla SLSC was the quickest in the 75-79 Male Beach Sprint, Stephen Nelson of Queenscliff SLSC gave the home crowd something to cheer in the 60-64 Male Sprint, and Sharon Deans from Coogee SLSC won the 50-54 Female Sprint with Queenscliff's Kelly McFadden picking up the Silver medal.

Andrew Stuart, North Curl Curl, won Gold in the 60+ M 1km Beach Run, Tim Gates Palm Beach, the Bronze, while Michael Kirkby, Freshwater, and Michael Bochner, Manly, gained points for their clubs in 4th and 5th, among a host of Manly runners; Kit Lloyd, Tim Farrelly, Paul Hewitt and Mark Epper, as well as North Steyne's Edward Platt and Dee Why's Ian Nicol. 

Further down the beach on Day Two, Avoca Beach SLSC added to their medal haul and pushed themselves up the point score with the team of Mark Felton, Matthew Jones, and David O’Grady winning the 170 Year Male Taplin.

Moving into mid-morning, Wanda SLSC’s Hayden Allum, Joel, and Benjamin Bolewski grabbed gold for their club in the 110 Year Male Board Relay, the former two adding to the medal they won earlier in the day in the 110 Year Taplin, while Manly’s Julia Bell, Rachel Crerar, and Florence Epper won the 110 Year Female Board Relay.

Bondi’s Margaret Simpson-Lee, Jeanette Brits, and Robyn Hill all placed inside the top five swimmers as they comfortably won the 150 Year Female Surf Teams, while Freshwater SLSC had a much tighter finish in the 170 Year Male as the team of Dave Bredeson, John de Mestre, and Andrew De Vries pipped North Bondi’s team by five points.

Just after midday, an ecstatic Stockton SLSC team earned the Hunter club’s first gold of the Championships – Katie Mulquiney, Kylie Whitbred, and Jo-anne Dryden positively stoked to take out the 130 Year Female Single Ski Relay.

Closer to Queenscliff SLSC, Calvin Brodie, Gregory Byrnes, and Mark Norris navigated challenging surf to claim the 150 Year Male Ski Relay.

Caves Beach SLSC and North Bondi were among the winners in the Double Ski, with Paul Carter and Robert Hunt taking out the 70-74 Male category for the Hunter club and Megan Rumford and Elizabeth Wise doing so for the eventual champions.

Central Coast had a good run in the Board Rescue late in the day –The Lakes SLSC’s Lauren Goldie and Leeanne Longford teamed up to take out the 40-44 Female event, and Terrigal SLSC’s Chris Mensforth and Hayden Smith added another medal to their tally in the 30-34 Male.

The 2024 NSW Surf Life Saving Championships, proudly presented by Your local club, continued Friday 15 March, with the beginning of the Open and Surf Boat Championships.

Results for the 2024 NSW Surf Boat State Championships in so far show the Manly Moonlighters won Gold in the 160 yrs min Female Surf Boat, congratulations Claire Ward, Amy Lanza (Reserve), Kate Munro, Lara Husselbee and Bastien Wallace. Queenscliff's Forty & Firing took Bronze in 160 yrs min Male Surf Boat; Simon Barnes, Patrick Kelleher, Stuart Menogue, Jonathan O'Loughlin, Nigel Johnston, while North Narrabeen's Dreadnaughts 200 yrs min Female Surf Boat crew; Aleisha Pollicina, Julie Anderson, Kerrie McManus and Lee Chaloner with legendary sweep Don McManus, won Silver. 

Another Legendary sweep, Matthew Sheridan, steered the Queenscliff Reality Queens;  Kristina Larsen, Kelly Marsh, Nicki Daley and Robyn Moore, to Silver in the180 yrs min Female Surf Boat Final.

A 'catch-up' round of our local surf boat crews efforts over the Season so far, from the local carnivals through to the ASRL Open, this year held down at beautiful Lorne in Victoria, runs Sunday March 24, before they all get ready to head north to this years' Aussies too.

Masters Divisions from local clubs among the top 15 were: Manly LSC on 338, Freshwater SLSC 145, Queenscliff SLSC 135, Palm Beach SLSC 118 and Newport SLSC on 92. However Dee Why picked up a solid 84 points, Mona Vale 72, North Steyne 50, Collaroy 31, North Curl Curl 26, Warriewood 25, Narrabeen 23, Avalon Beach 6, some indication of how strong the local Masters Divisions within our clubs are.

Manly LSC's Women's Masters - cleaned up again!

The 2024 NSW Surf Life Saving Open and Surf Boat Championships, proudly presented by Your local club, wrap up today, Sunday March 17, with an individual finals package to be streamed live on Facebook, YouTube and Kayo Freebies via Surf Life Saving NSW - enjoy the action HERE if you can't get over that Narrabeen bridge and a little further south.

The NSW Surf Boat Championships finals will also be available to watch at 4pm with the viewing link shared via SLSNSW Facebook and Youtube. It will include semi finals highlights and all eight finals races. Good luck to all the crews this weekend!

All Masters Results can be accessed here. 

Results available so far for the 2024 NSW Surf Boat State Championships 

The 2024 NSW Surf Life Saving Open Championships report will run in Issue 619.  Open Division Results available so far are available here.

Photos courtesy of Shane Abrahamson and SLS NSW - a few more of this year's great annual celebration below!


North Bondi SLSC – 409

Bondi SBLSC – 402

Manly LSC – 338

Shelly Beach SLSC – 219

Port Macquarie SLSC – 180

Wanda SLSC – 158

Terrigal SLSC – 154

Freshwater SLSC – 145

Queenscliff SLSC – 135

Palm Beach SLSC – 118

Coogee SLSC – 112

Wamberal SLSC – 102

Newport SLSC – 92

Stockton SLSC – 89

The Lakes SLSC – 87