Explosive action as surf champs return
PUBLISHED: 08:22 26 August 2015 | UPDATED: 08:22 26 August 2015
Exmouth beach welcomes back the Surf Life Saving GB Ocean Championships this week.
Last year’s ‘hugely successful’ championships boosted trade in the town, raising its profile, attracting competitors from across the UK, with entries from East Anglia, Wales and Derbyshire.
This year’s four-day competition, starting on Wednesday, August 26, showcases the skills of surf life saving, challenging competitors, aged from seven, to take part in sea and land-based races, plus activities connected to life-saving skills and surf sport.
This year’s event boasts more than 30 race categories over different age groups including nippers - seven to 13-year-olds, youth - 13 to 19, and the masters. The event will be hosted by volunteers from Exmouth Beach Rescue Club.
Fran Fleming, senior manager at Surf Life Saving GB, said: “All elements of the competition are part of the real life saving activity. All demonstrate the core skills needed to save a life. And all are part of the race to get to a casualty who may drown if that race is lost.
“Exmouth 2015 promises close competition and the most enthralling and entertaining spectator experience from the explosive beach races to the highest quality open-water swimming.”
She added: “The nippers is set to be the largest group, with top South West clubs contesting the overall team award, last year won by Woolacombe.
“But we expect last year’s runner-up and 2015 Cornish Champions, Gyllyngvase from Falmouth, to give them a close run for their money this year.
“Last year’s 2014 masters champions, Saunton Sands, only headed the leader board by 78 points from chasing Branksome Chine, top Dorset club - a tiny margin in a high-scoring sport.
“The competition could not have been closer or more exciting, with those only beaten by the narrowest of margins now eagerly looking for an August 2015 revenge.”