Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service have managed to take the overall win at Surf Life Saving New Zealand's premier event, the 2017 TSB Bank National Surf Life Championships, held this past weekend in Christchurch.
The Bay of Plenty team led from the first day, even though many other competitors from around New Zealand pushed hard to prevent them from taking the title for the fifth consecutive time.
Finishing in second was Mairangi Bay from Auckland, who managed to squeeze past third place during the final day. It was an emotional event for the team as they wore black bands and paid tribute to sporting great, the late Tania Dalton, who was a member of the club, making their podium finish truly special.
Waikanae Surf Life Saving Club from Gisborne managed to take third at the annual event, despite being a relatively small team, and finished only six points behind Mairangi Bay.
Surf Life Saving New Zealand sport manager Mike Lord congratulates the Mount team for winning another nationals title.
“They performed brilliantly all weekend and it's great to see their athletes doing so well,” he says.
“In fact, all of the athletes did extremely well this weekend. A lot of the races were really close and that's due to the talent of the lifeguards. They were also fair and supportive to each other which is always fantastic to see, in any sport.”
Rounding out the top five was Piha Surf Life Saving Club and Orewa Surf Life Saving Club in fourth and fifth respectively.
TSB Bank National Surf Life Saving Championship event manager Prue Younger is delighted at how the four-day extravaganza went and pays tribute to all the people, sponsors and clubs for their support in making it such a great event.
“Overall it was an absolutely fantastic event. We really enjoyed being back in Christchurch and I think all of the teams did too. The hospitality from Christchurch and New Brighton locals has been second-to-none and we're really grateful for their support,” she says.
“The support for the event from surf clubs and sponsors has also made this event special. So thank you to them especially TSB Bank, Countdown, Christchurch City Council, Hirepool, Ricoh, Paper Plus and New Brighton Club for their help.”
Both Mike and Prue also thank the surf lifesaving officials and volunteers for their hard work and dedication throughout the four days, and say they made such a huge contribution to the smooth running of the event.
The next major event in the Surf Life Saving New Zealand sport calendar is the BP IRB Nationals, held at Waipu Cove on April 1-2.