Surf crews bailed in quarters
By Adam Hicks
THE REGION'S best boaties pulled up their Speedos for the 34th annual Coffs Craft Carnival at the weekend.
Brunswick Heads sweep Stewart White was among over 1000 athletes who made the Coffs Harbour event the year's biggest on the east coast of Australia.
White and his crew, front bow Luke Alexander, second bow Baden East, second stroke Greg White and stroke Matt Went, progressed to the quarter-finals of the reserves surf boat competition.
White said a limited preparation prevented the crew from emulating their success of last year where they finished fourth in the final.
"There was a fairly big sea running so it was anybody's race at the start," White said.
"They rowed pretty well, actually."
The Evans Head master crew of John Power, Simon Hyder, Mick Robson, Jamie Brown and sweep Peter Hickey achieved the best result from the Far North Coast local teams, finishing third in the final.
Surf life saving clubs from Byron Bay, Ballina and Evans Head travelled for the competition with some using it as preparation for the national titles in Western Australia next year.
Event organiser Tony Mutkins said it was one of the biggest carnivals in the event's 34-year history.
"It was a huge success," he said.
"The conditions were brilliant. Everything ran like clockwork.
"We had good numbers from right up and down the east coast of Australia."
More than 80 surf boat crews competed over the weekend, giving locals a chance to line up against some of the best in the country.
Seas of 1.5m-2m made for big spraws as crews cut through swell.