Batemans Bay's masters women's surfboat crew have topped off the competition season with trans-tasman success, winning gold at the World Masters Games in New Zealand.
The crew of Tracy Innes, Barbara Van Luin, Megan Duros and Fran Campbell backed up from their bronze at last month’s national championships to top the field in each of their three races at Takapuna Bay on Sunday.
Consisting of short course races in a round robin format, the Word Masters Games attracts some of the best crews from Australia and New Zealand.
Sweep Neil Innes said the mix of crews that attended the competition was part of what made it so challenging.
“There is a bit of the unknown when it comes to the worlds,” he said.
“At a state or national event, you know exactly who the strong crews are and at what level you have to be at to beat them, but this puts you up against crews you have never heard of before.
“The girls had to really dig deep to get the win, so they can be proud of their efforts.”
The girls had to really dig deep to get the win, so they can be proud of their efforts.- Neil Innes
Sunday’s result caps off a stellar six weeks for the Phoenix crew, who have placed in the top three of the state and national masters 160 titles.
Their gold in NSW SLS state titles in Newcastle was followed by bronze at the nationals in Queensland towards the end of March.
Innes said the crew rose to the challenge in every respect.
“We’ve really ramped up our training throughout this time,” he said.
“The girls were aiming for the clean sweep of state, national and worlds, which is quite a difficult thing to achieve.
“They didn’t get the win at nationals, but coming third there made them want to do well here.
“A couple of them are still fairly new to the sport, so they have done really well.”