Day 1 - It seems we are fated yet
once again. We arrive in
Dunedin to the first rain in weeks.
Although numbers were down this year probably due to distance
there were teams from United North Piha, Mairangi Bay, Raglan,
Kariotahi, Omanu, Papamoa, New Plymouth Old Boys, Fitzroy, Paekakariki,
Opunake, Spencer Park, St. Kilda, St Clair, Sumner, Brighton, Kaka Point
and of course Andrew Cronin with his substitute East End team.
There was some very close racing particularly between St Clair
Opunake and Mairangi Bay. The
Brighton Ladies team performed excellently.
It was good to see the likes of John Freeman and Tiny Lawrence
from Spencer Park still out there competing.
Poor Mark Weatherall was getting ragged by Gums (doing the
commentary) about his forthcoming nuptuals. Because of the
Highlander/Crusader match being played in Dunedin racing finished at
2.30 which was just as well as it was very cold and particularly hard on
the patients. Opunake were
leading from Mairangi Bay and St Clair after day 1.
Day 2 dawned and it was slightly
warmer but the surf was somewhat bigger. The patients were given a
heater in their pen and it was the most popular place on the beach.
were now at the stage of running semi finals in the various divisions
and the competition was fierce particular in the premier division. The
most entertaining races, if that is a correct terms, were those of the
“Masters” amongst whose number were Curly Evans, Vaughan Garret,
Graham Blanchard, John Freeman, Tiny Lawrence and a few ring-ins.
Dave Hickey when asked why he wasn’t competing pleaded too many
other things to look after.
One had to feel very sorry for
Sumner who in three races had engine problems.
There was great frustration and checks on the motors revealed
nothing. They would go out
and test them – fine – race them and they stopped.
The mystery was eventually solved when everything had finished. A small plastic ball the size of a bead plus a spring had
come loose in the bulb pump on the fuel line.
Now who would ever have thought to
look there – such a small thing caused them to miss out on at least
two gold medals. There’s the rub.
When racing finished the points
leaders were Opunake, Mairangi Bay, St Clair and Spencer Park.
It was a great two days and thanks
must go to the Warrington Club for providing lots of hot food and drinks
and for hosting the VIP lunch on Sunday.
Prize giving was held at the Cock
and Bull Pub which was jammed packed.
A presentation was made to Peter Gibbons who is standing down as
Carnival Controller – he feels that he has taken things as far as he
can and that it needs some new ideas.
However he does not propose to disappear and will always be there
to help and he will continue to run the South Island Champs and hopes to
be coach or assistant coach of St Kilda SLC.
The medal presentations over the
Arancia Cup went to Opunake
The Arancia South Island Cup and BP
Trophy to Spencer Park as the top overall club and best South Island
Other Prize Winners
For full results see Surf Life
Saving New Zealand Web Site www.slsnz.org.nz