With strength in numbers, Red Beach won the 53rd Owen Chapman Cup surf carnival for the fifth consecutive year.
In ideal conditions and with a surf to pep things up, the club finished with a winning margin of 53 points to head off Orewa, Mairangi Bay and Piha who filled the minor placings.
A record 375 competitors fronted for the event, easily surpassing the total of 300 lifeguards who took part in the 50th year of competition for the cup back in 2006.
Surf athletes came from 16 clubs across the country along with the two Australian branch teams of Central Coast and New South Wales Country. The Australian visitors, here for the biennial Trans-Tasman surf series, added spice to the carnival with many outstanding performances.
The event has grown in stature to become New Zealand’s third biggest surf carnival after the NZ Championships and the Northern Regional Championships. It has come to be regarded by lifeguards as a tournament that regularly attracts top athletes and provides top competition.
The boat and canoe arena saw a record number of 22 surf boat crews in action, again highlighting the growing interest in surf boat competition.
In the open men’s division, Red Beach pulled off a trifecta by finishing one-two-three in the six-boat final. And the club’s Monty’s Mavericks crew won the final of the open women’s division.
Piha took out both the U23 and U19 men’s boat finals.
Overall Points for Owen Chapman Cup:
Red Beach (178) 1, Orewa (125) 2, Mairangi Bay (95) 3, Piha (62) 4, Muriwai (39) 5. For the full set of Owen Chapman Cup results, click here.