Moruya Drifters surge to ASRL national short course under 19s championship win

TOP GONG: Charlie Hamilton, Jacob Zutt, Jarrod Bloomfield, Chris O'Meley and Grant Wilkinson, filling in for coach/sweep Bert Hunt, who also was involved in running the event.

TOP GONG: Charlie Hamilton, Jacob Zutt, Jarrod Bloomfield, Chris O'Meley and Grant Wilkinson, filling in for coach/sweep Bert Hunt, who also was involved in running the event.

A South Coast surf club has had a stellar month in the surfboat racing scene and has nabbed its first national boat medal.

Moruya Surf Life Saving Club’s under 19s crew won the fiercely contested Team Navy ASRL National Short Course Championship in punishing conditions at Manly on Sunday.

That is the first national boat medal win the club has actually had. - Bert Hunt Moruya Drifters' coach/sweep

The Moruya Drifters’ crew of Charlie Hamilton, Jacob Zutt, Jarrod Bloomfield and Chris O’Meley was assisted by sweep Grant Wilkinson, who filled in for coach Bert Hunt as he was involved in managing the event.

The Drifters, in a field of 18, were in the leading group after their first two point score heats.

In the finals Moruya was unstoppable and used its mix of surf skills and rowing speed to claim the national crown ahead of Henley Beach Boys and Avoca Beach Gruntz.

Hunt was pleased by the crew’s effort in challenging two-metre surf.

“They rowed exceptionally well on the weekend,” he said.

“There were big face waves, two metres plus at times.

“That is the first national boat medal win the club has actually had. 

“It is a big deal for the four boys.”

Zutt and O’Meley rowed the George Bass marathon with the open Moruya Vikings and Hunt observed additional improvement in the pair.

“The work that people get out of doing the George Bass transfers beautifully across in to the sprint work,” he said.

The Vikings also raced at the short course championships and were unfortunately chased down in the final.

“They were leading for a good amount of the distance coming home, but crews swallowed them up on waves,” Hunt said.

The ASRL Open is the next racing event on the agenda and will be held at Shellharbour from February 19 to 21.

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