At the invitation of the Surf Life Saving Association of Great Britain (SLS-GB) Crawley Town Life Saving Club ran the inaugural SLS-GB National Club SERC (Simulated Emergency Rescue Competition) Championships refereed by Teresa Myatt as part of their Open Championships at the K2 Sports Centre last week.
The SLS-GB Club Championships was the combined score from four team championships the Youth (U19) Girls and boy’s together with the ladies and Men’s Open teams.
Crawley Town who in the recent year have been both World and European Club Open SERC Champions won the title with teams comprising Girls – Georgia Blenkley, Brooke Mickel, Kiera Narroway and Frankie Phillips, Boys – Alex Jackson, Iker Lopez, Jamie Scutt and Luke Smith, Ladies – Jessica Hancock, Lucy Howes, Vicky Threfall and Donna Wickens, Men, - Dave Butler Gary Lee, Dominik Strba and Simon Worne.
Following the SERC competition 19 teams from as far afield as DLRG Rheda Wiedenbrueck in Germany, Leeds and Swansea competed in the Open Speed Championships a Championships based on the ILS (International Life Saving) European Club championships, which saw Crawley Town retain the overall Club Title as well as both the Hepworth Junior (when this time it was the girls team of Jade Hand, Emily Hurst, Ruby Jamieson, Ellyn Reeve and Emma Wilkinson) and Senior Speed tankards which saw Crawley’s Towns current world champion and European record holder Zara Williams and first timer Owen Peel stepping in to boost the respective Ladies and Men’s teams.
Despite not having a number of it major stars Crawley Town “swept the board” in the Individual rankings with Brooke gaining the highest score for the girls with 90 points just two points ahead of Jade, with Emma and Kiera 3rd and 4th. For the Boys Alex beat his rival from Leeds by again 2 points when achieving a total of 92 points. In the ladies event Zara took top place with 78 points a remarkable achievement considering she did not compete in two of the five individual races. But even more remarkable was Simon Worne who returned from an operation to compete in every event, this being his first competition for 9 months to come away with top place by gaining 100 points, 17 in front of his nearest rival from Leeds.
A special mention goes to both Amia Lopez and Abigail Woollard aged 11 who entered the daunting 200m Obstacle race which is a 4 length race of the K2 50m pool swimming passing under two obstacles per length. They finished in time of 3 minutes and 3 minutes 1 second respectively ahead of a number of much older swimmers. Likewise in the Men Michael Hobbs proved once again that persistent determination pays when he finished 2nd in the Open Men’s line event
The Championship would not have been possible if it was not for the support of both the RLSS-UK (Royal Life Saving Society), SLS-GB, club members and organiser Club Chairman - Luke Peel. RLSS ILS Sports representative Mrs Stephany Andrews along with Mr. Nigel Bowden SLS-GB National Events Manager attended the Championships which was supported Mr. Andy Hepworth – MD of Hepworth Breweries.
Next being a World Championship year will now see Crawley Town start to prepare for National pool Championships in January, February & April in an attempt to gain the qualification times needed to travel to Australia for RESCUE 2018 in November. For further information on the Crawley Town Life Saving Club (CTLSC) and its activities please visit www.crawleytownlsc.com