South Island Champs – Warrington Beach Dunedin – 10 March 2007

Because of other commitments it was two years since our last visit to Dunedin for the Championships. We flew down on Saturday morning and arrived to a sunny day but with a temperature of 7 deg c!!! By the time we reached the beach at 10 am it was considerably warmer and although we did wear jackets the thermals were unnecessary.

Teams from ten clubs were competing including Whangamata in the North Island whose crew are at University in Dunedin at the moment. We did spy a Paekakariki hat amongst the competitors and we learned later that Ben who had been overseas was at the last minute unable to make it. It must have been extremely disappointing.

There was enough surf to make it interesting and it was great to see clubs like Kaka Point holding their own and in fact winning bronze in the Mass Rescue Senior and also in the Single Rescue Senior event – these medals were the first they had won at these Championships. Although the young team from Spencer Park was not in the medals they put up a good performance.

The top Club was St Clair closely followed by St Kilda 4 points behind and Sumner in third place. It would be interesting to know if it would have been a dead heat between the Saints if St Kilda hand not joined forces with Paekak in one race which because it was a mixed team did not qualify for points. A generous gesture.

It really was a fun event well organized and controlled by Peter Gibbons and the beach officials.

The prize giving was held at the St Kilda Club house and after the medal ceremony a draw has held for a Wilsco Tank donated by Arancia and the thrilled recipient was Waimari.

We won’t leave it another two years before we attend as for us it is one of the highlights of the year.