Kiama Downs Take Out First IRB 2019 Premiership Round
Avalon Beach SLSC - photo by Richard Black
The 2019 Sharkskin NSW IRB (Inflatable Rescue Boat) Premiership Series kicked off at Stockton Beach last weekend.
In small surf, 23 clubs got their engines running to see how they measure up against each other ahead of the next three rounds and the State and Australian Championships.
On the first weekend since patrols finished in NSW, the IRB racing teams were keen to hit the water for 118 races.
Stockton SLSC President Callan Nickerson said, “The ability for a small club like ours to host and deliver an important carnival is not just good for our beach but our community. They’re one hundred per cent behind what we do as a club. We had a lot of people down here watching and everyone had a great weekend.”
“Our club has been competitive in IRB racing for five years now and we love that our members are up-skilling and becoming such great crew and drivers. IRBs are inherent to our core business, lifesaving, so to have people that love being out in the surf and are very competent and responsive to rescues makes our beach and community safer.”
Kiama Downs SLSC is one of the oldest IRB racing clubs in the state. Last weekend they continued their success taking out the point score as well as a number of key divisions.
Nathan and wife Kathy Foster were the drivers for their teams who took out the Open Male and Female Race as well as the premier Open Mass Rescue finals.
Nathan said, “We love when IRB season comes around. We have a teammate who has been racing since 1984 and we have a long history of the sport in our club.
“We’ve brought up our smallest team in years with just 11 people so we didn’t expect to do as well as we have in the past, but to come away with such fantastic results against really big, strong clubs in round one is great."
Foster says success in the sport isn’t about how much money you have to spend on gear, “There’s not just one thing that makes you a good team. It’s speed, time, good maintenance, consistency, being able to adjust your speed and technique to different swells and being able to do it all under pressure in a race."
Kiama Downs prides itself on the strength of its IRB drivers and crew in helping keep their beaches safe too. “The difference between and IRB racer and those who haven’t raced is huge. We develop super fast response times to incidents. That difference in time and skill could potentially save a life out in the water. It’s one of the most relevant surf sports to developing good patrol members in our organisation. It teaches you teamwork and the ability to move and act fast under the pump.”
Kiama Downs SLSC in action last weekend
Queenscliff placed best out of SNB Teams
The 2019 Sharkskin NSW IRB Premiership heads to The Lakes SLSC on the Central Coast for Round Two on 18-19 May.
Race formats in the 2019 Sharkskin NSW IRB Premiership Series include;
- IRB Rescue
- IRB Mass Rescue
- IRB Teams Rescue
- IRB Rescue Tube
- IRB Relay
At the end of the four-event rounds, the club with the top points will be awarded the title of NSW Premiers.
Club Rankings Round 1
- Kiama Downs
- Caves Beach
- North Cronulla
- South Maroubra, Thirroul, Woonona
- North Avoca
- Ocean Beach
- Avalon Beach
- Bungan Beach, Helensburgh-Stanwell Park, Stockton
Race Results Round 1
- 35+ Mixed Rescue Tube: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 Caves Beach, 3 Coogee
- Open Male Rescue Tube: 1 Caves Beach, 2 Kiama Downs, 3 Queenscliff
- Open Female Rescue Tube: 1 Caves Beach, 2 Caves Beach, 3 North Cronulla
- 45+ Mixed Rescue Tube: 1 Newcastle, 2 Coogee, 3 Caves Beach
- U23 Mixed Rescue Tube: 1 Thirroul, 2 Terrigal, 3 North Cronulla
- Open Mixed Relay: 1 North Cronulla, 2 Terrigal, 3 Caves Beach
- Rookie Mass Rescue: 1 North Avoca, 2 Coogee, 3 Woonona
- U23 Mixed Mass Rescue: 1 Woonona, 2 Terrigal, 3 Umina
- Open Mass Rescue: 1 Kiama Downs, 1 South Maroubra, 2 Terrigal, 3 North Cronulla
- 45+ Mixed IRB Mass Rescue: 1 Umina, 2 Caves Beach, 3 Terrigal
- Open Female Mass Rescue: 1 North Cronulla, 2 Queenscliff, 3 Kiama Downs
- 35+ Mixed Mass Rescue: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 Forster, 3 Queenscliff
- 35+ Mixed Teams Rescue: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 Forster, 3 North Avoca
- Open Male Teams Rescue: 1 Queenscliff, 2 Woonona, 3 North Cronulla
- Open Female Teams Rescue: 1 North Cronulla, 2 Terrigal, 3 Caves Beach
- 45+ Mixed Teams Rescue: 1 Terrigal, 2 Umina
- U23 Mixed Teams Rescue: 1 Newcastle, 2 Terrigal, 3 Nobbys
- U23 Mixed Surf Race: 1 South Maroubra, 2 Thirroul, 3 Queenscliff
- Open Mixed Rookie Surf Rescue: 1 Caves Beach, 2 Umina, 3 North Avoca
- 35+ Mixed IRB Surf Race: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 Forster, 3 Queenscliff
- 45+ Surf Rescue: 1 Newcastle, 2 Coogee, 3 Terrigal
- Open Male Rescue: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 North Cronulla, 3 Queenscliff
- Open Female Surf Race: 1 Kiama Downs, 2 North Cronulla, 4 North Cronulla
2019 Sharkskin NSW IRB Premiership Rounds
- Round 1: 4-5 May 2019 Stockton SLSC
- Round 2: 18-19 May 2019 The Lakes SLSC
- Round 3: 1-2 June 2019 Cape Hawke SLSC NSW
- Round 4: 15-16 June 2019 Caves Beach SLSC
NSW IRB Championships: 29-30 June 2019 Cape Hawke SLSC
Report by Surf Life Saving NSW, Photos by Richard Black
Newport SLSC - Round 1, 2019 - photo by Richard Black
Newport IRB racing team had some amazing results in the finals:
- 45+ tube rescue 4th
- Male tube rescue 7th
- 35+ mass rescue 8th
- U23 mass rescue 3rd
- Female team rescue 6th
- 45+ rescue 6th
- 35+ rescue 5th
- U23 Rescue 6th
Nobby's SLSC stands tall in Round 1 - photo by Richard Black