600 surf lifesavers from an estimated 80 Surf Life Saving clubs around Australia will shift their Inflatable Rescue Boats (IRBs) into competition gear for the National IRB Championships from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 July at Kingscliff Beach, NSW.
The national tournament will bring together the strongest crews from around the country for the Interstate Championships, with Queensland as the reigning champions, followed by the Australian Championships, last won by North Burleigh SLSC in 2013.
Surf Life Saving Australia’s Chair of Sport, Dick Bignold said he is excited about the event being held in NSW, and thanked Cudgen Headlands SLSC, Tweed Shire Council and Destination Tweed for their support in planning and hosting for the event.
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“Surf Life Saving Australia thanks Cudgen Surf Life Saving Club for hosting the event this year, following on from a successful event in Darwin last year,” Mr Bignold said.
“This competition hones rescue skills essential to lifesaving practice. Each season, around 3,000 rescues are performed using an IRB by surf lifesavers and lifeguards Australia-wide. That’s 3,000 lives saved each year by our rescue boats.”
Cudgen Headland SLSC President, Adam Mills said that the club is very excited about being provided with an opportunity to host what promises to be another great event at their home beach.
“Hosting the Australian IRB Championships is an exciting extension of an initiative that the club has developed over the past few seasons with our fellow Tweed Coast Surf Clubs to train and develop a new generation of lifesavers and one which will hopefully increase the motivation of our local Clubs, and members to become part of this iconic activity of Surf Life Saving”, he said.
The Mayor of Tweed, Councillor Barry Longland, said the IRB championships were another extremely valuable inclusion to the rising list of major sporting events held in the Tweed.
“Tweed Shire is fast developing a reputation as a destination for leading events and we welcome this spectacular and exciting tournament to our area.”
Surf Life Saving Australia welcomes spectators and encourages residents to head along to catch the action on Kingscliff Beach for the Championships from Friday 18 to Sunday 20 July. For more information, click here.