THE FUTURE of surf lifesaving on the Gold Coast is in good hands, if SLSQ’s annual Awards of Excellence Gala Ball is anything to go by.
Held in Brisbane on Saturday night, the awards recognise the state’s best, with Gold Coast clubs taking out some major gongs.
Currumbin SLSC’s Courtney Taylor was named as Queensland’s 18-25 Young Surf Lifesaver of the Year for her “passion for surf lifesaving and beach safety”.
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Courtney was unable to collect her award, as she is currently completing a Kokoda Track Challenge in Papua New Guinea to raise funds for her club, but SLSQ chief executive John Brennan explained why she was chosen over her peers.
“While Courtney is still quite young in her lifesaving career, she certainly demonstrates a maturity well beyond her years which has earned her the respect of the entire lifesaving community,” Mr Brennan said.
“I’m confident that we have a great future ahead of us with members like Courtney involved in the movement,” he added.
Pacific SLSC (Palm Beach) club captain Clayton Webster is Queensland’s 2014/15 Surf Lifesaver of the Year for going “well above and beyond the call of duty”.
Since joining Pacific SLSC in 2000, Clayton has amassed an incredible 3,000 volunteer hours on patrol. He currently holds 58 proficient surf lifesaving awards, and dedicates an average of more than 200 hours per season to his club beach patrols, Waverunner 3 coastal patrols, as well as helicopter patrols on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.
Earlier this year, Clayton was named the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopter Service’s Rescue Crew Person of the Year for the third year running.
It was also a night of celebration for Mermaid Beach AEME SLSC, named Queensland’s Club of the Year for the second year running.
While accolades keep coming for Liz Pluimers (Pictured; North Burleigh), who was named Athlete of the Year for becoming the first surf sports athlete to win surf lifesaving’s Triple Crown in the same year.
Lee Vrolyks (Northcliffe) was recognised as Masters Athlete of the Year and Currumbin’s Brett Robinson was named Coach of the Year.