Wave of success: Coffs Harbour athletes shine on Sunshine Coast

Xavier Hulbert and Ethan Dawson in the Under 17 Board Rescue quarter final. Photo: Surf Life Saving NSW.

FOURTEEN athletes from Coffs Harbour Surf Life Saving Club (CHSLSC) journeyed to Queensland’s Sunshine Coast to compete in the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships from April 13 to 21, notching up impressive performances across various disciplines.

Throughout the championship, the Coffs Harbour touring team made their presence felt, featuring in seven finals, fifteen semi-finals, and twelve quarter-finals.

Grant Lawler, the Youth Development Officer at CHSLSC, provided insights into the team’s journey.

“On Saturday 13 April Oki Clifford represented the Coffs club with some commendable races in the board and beach events.

“It was Oki’s first Australian Championships and the surf was challenging at Maroochydore.

“On the sand Quinn Evans made the trip to defend his Bronze medal from 2023.

“Quinn finished with a 21st place and is keen to make amends in 2025,” Lawler said.

At Mooloolaba the next day, Xavier Hulbert, Elliot Hulbert, Anthony Hulbert, Grant Lawler and Melina Lawler completed the 2km Ocean Swim event.

“We all finished with reasonable times and are already looking forward to next year,” Grant Lawler said.

On Monday 14 and 15 April, the Masters Championships and Board Riding were held at Maroochydore and Coolum beaches with Aaron Beavis, Richard Gunther, Melina Lawler and Grant Lawler representing the club in masters.

Aaron and Grant placed third in the male 30 – 34 yrs Board Rescue.

Xavier Hulbert and Elliot Hulbert competed in the U17 Board Riding.

Xavier, finished in fifth overall, was unlucky not to contest the four man final.

“The Open competition commenced on Wednesday 17 April and the club was represented by Ethan Dawson, Xavier Hulbert, Elliot Hulbert, Holly Becker, Abbey Lawler and Maddison O’Leary.

“The highlight being Maddison’s U17 surf race final, where she finished 23rd.

“The surf at the championships was difficult to negotiate and often caused some mayhem in ski and board events.”

The final days of competition saw the adaptive events take place at Mooloolaba.

“Sara Bergen had much success competing in these events, finishing first in her board, swim and beach runs,” Lawler said.

Looking ahead, the Coffs Harbour Surf Club now sets its sights on international competition.

“The club shifts its focus now to the upcoming world titles in August on the Gold Coast.

“Our competitors will gather on 18 May to celebrate the club’s achievements and present major surf sports awards from 5pm.

“Free tickets are available via the club Team App.”


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