WINNERS ARE GRINNERS: Some of the Byron Bay nippers from the NSW Country championships last year. The club is aiming for a seventh straight win next month.
WINNERS ARE GRINNERS: Some of the Byron Bay nippers from the NSW Country championships last year. The club is aiming for a seventh straight win next month. Surf Life Saving NSW

Byron chasing seventh win

BYRON Bay is aiming for a seventh straight win at the NSW Country Surf Lifesaving Championships at South West Rocks next month.

The club has made the competition its on over the past six years but Far North Coast rivals Cudgen closed the gap last year with an influx of talent at the club.

Both clubs had athletes compete in the winning NSW Country team at the Trans Tasman series in New Zealand last week.

Byron Bay and Cudgen will also have members in the NSW Interstate team who will be looking to get the title back from Queensland at Alexandria Headland this weekend.

A number of Byron Bay competitors will head to the NSW Country championships with plenty of emphasis on team events.

"It has been a big effort over the years and it's a carnival that the club really rallies behind,” club president Paul Pattison said.

"We've built up a great rivalry with Cudgen and it's great to be able to compete against clubs similar to us.

"The focus has been on the nippers this season and we're looking to get quite a few of them involved.

"We've had guys just come back from New Zealand and they're getting into the hard part of their training.

"Caitlin Callahan has been going really well on the ski lately and all the team events will be hotly contested.”

The NSW Country championships if for clubs outside the metropolitan areas, with more than 1500 competitors, officials and supporters expected at the two-day event.

Warilla-Barrack Point and Mollymook will be strong contenders from southern NSW while Mid North Coast clubs including Port Macquarie, South West Rocks, and Wauchope-Bonny Hills will be keen to take advantage of the familiar coastal waters.

"We are really fortunate to have a great bunch of committed volunteers who are vital to making this happen,” South West Roacks club president Rod McDonagh said.

"It's a lot of work but we're almost there and looking forward to welcoming everyone to our little patch of paradise.

"We enjoyed a hugely successful turnout in 2016 and we are confident that everyone will be able to enjoy a great championship next month.”



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