Cooks Hill Surf Life Saving Club (SLSC) claimed its third straight club championship title at the 2019 Professionals Weekend of Surf at Forster Main Beach over the weekend.
The Newcastle-based club beat out previous winner Umina in second and Swansea Belmont in third, with Forster finishing an impressive seventh out of the 43 clubs that competed.
With competitors travelling from as far afield as Illawarra in the south and Currumbin (QLD) in the north, it was no surprise that Saturday's Ironman event attracted a record 386 entrants.
With a flat early-season water course and a challenging beach section, competition was fierce across all categories, from the Under-10s right up to the over-50s.
Currumbin's Ky Kinsella took out the open men's Ironman ahead of Swansea Belmont pair Saxon Coates and Bayley Connelly, while Cooks Hill's Bella Williams beat North Bondi's Lily Finati and clubmate Freya Koneteschnik in a monumental battle in the open women's.
You may also like:
Promising conditions on Sunday gave way to a strong nor-easter that challenged competitors on the water throughout the second day of competition.
A total of 580 entrants competed across the day, taking part in the swim, board and ski races, as well as the taplin relay and the popular three-person board relay, which brought a spirited and noisy close to the carnival.
Ky Kinsella was crowned overall champion of the open men's division ahead of Saxon Coates and Elouera's Michael Kember, while Bella Williams finished in front of Lily Finati and Ocean Beach's Nicole Majsak in the open women's.
Forster SLSC president John Quinn was once again thrilled with the standard of competition.
"The quality of all competitors was outstanding and it is a pleasure to have such a number of quality athletes competing over the weekend, many of whom placed at Country, State and Australian championships last season," he said.
"Thank you to all the clubs and competitors for supporting the event and we could not run a great carnival without the support of the officials, water safety and workers who set up, prepare the food and provide the administration."
Mr Quinn and carnival sponsor Darrell Roche of Professionals Forster Tuncurry presented Cooks Hill team manager Michael Clancy with the Club Point Score Championship and a voucher for a Kracka board.
The Weekend of Surf will return in 2020 for its 25th year.
Club Championship results:
- Cooks Hill 466
- Umina 295
- Swansea Belmont 290
- North Curl Curl 254
- Redhead 152
- Manly 127
- Forster 119
- Dee Why 117
- Shelley Beach 104
- Soldiers Beach 103
Stay ahead with local news by signing up for the Great Lakes Advocate newsletter here.