NZ surf lifesavers take double gold at Rescue 2014

Saturday, 20 September 2014

The world championship medals keep on rolling in for New Zealand's surf lifesaving stars as the New Zealand Youth team picked up double gold in France overnight.

Taranaki athlete Olivia Eaton, who represents Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service, became world champion taking gold in the Women's Beach Flags.

Teammate Jake Hurley (Mairangi Bay SLSC) also took gold in the Men's Beach Flags taking his first world championship title.

Papamoa's Ben Johnston then took one of the day's silver medals in the Men's Board Race. He was just behind Australia's Green Nikolas and ahead of Joshua Brown. The other silver came from the Men's Taplin Team.

Midway's Matthew Scott added to the team's successful day on the beach by taking bronze in the Men's Surf Race along with Omanu's Ben Cochrane who took bronze in the Ironman.

Piha's Hannah Williams won two bronze medals; one in the Women's Ski and one in the Ironwoman. The Women's Taplin team took the fifth bronze of the day.

That caps off the beach events for the New Zealand Youth team who move on to the pool events from tonight (NZ time).

Having completed a successful first two days of competition in the pool where they took a total of 13 medals and broke three world records, the New Zealand Team (the Black Fins) moved on to the Simulated Emergency Response Competition (SERC) competition overnight, where they finished in thirteenth place, with France taking the lead.

The SERC events are designed to test the initiative, judgment, knowledge, and abilities of four lifesavers who, acting as a team, apply lifesaving skills in a simulated emergency situation unknown to them prior to the start. Paul Cracroft-Wilson, Andy McMillan, Steve Kent and Chris Dawson competed for the Black Fins.

Tonight (NZ time) the Black Fins move on to the beach for their fourth day of competition.

New Zealand Team Manager Mark Weatherall says the team is looking forward to getting on to the beach after a successful two days in the pool.

"It's a chance for our ocean-based athletes to really get up and match the efforts of our pool athletes, he says.

"There is no doubt the team will be giving it their all as well look to win back-to-back world titles and create history."

New Zealand won the title of lifesaving world champions at Rescue 2014 in Adelaide for the first time in 14 years. If they retain the title at Rescue 2014, it will be the first time that a NZ surf lifesaving team has won the world title twice in a row.

After Day Two of the national teams open competition, the Black FIns were leading with 424 points ahead of France on 411 and Italy in third with 381.

After Day One of the national team's national competition, the NZ Youth team was in second place on 216 points, behind Australia with 243. South Africa was I third with 143 points.

The results from the competition overnight are yet to be verified.

The Surf Boat competition is also taking place and New Zealand has teams competing from Red Beach and Piha Surf Life Saving Clubs. The women's Masters Surf Boat (120 age) came in second. 

Follow our national teams here on Facebook for results, updates and photos throughout the event.

For the full results visit and to watch the live streaming of the finals visit

Black Fins: Day Two results

SERC events- 13th place

Click here to see the Day One results and here to see Day Two results.

NZ Youth Team: Day Two results

1st- Olivia Eaton, Women's Beach Flags
1st- Jake Hurley, Men's Beach Flags
2nd- Ben Johnston, Men's Board Race
2nd- Men's Taplin Team
3rd- Ben Cochrane, Ironman
3rd- Matthew Scott, Men's Ocean Race
3rd- Hannah Williams, Women's Ski
3rd- Hannah Williams, Ironwoman
3rd- Women's Taplin Team

New Zealand Team:

Natasha Hind- Lyall Bay
Samantha Lee- Lyall Bay
Chanel Hickman- Mairangi Bay
Danielle McKenzie- Mairangi Bay
Laura Quilter- Wainui
Natalie Peat- Papamoa
Steven Kent- Titahi Bay
Andrew McMillan- St Clair
Paul Cracroft Wilson- Fitzroy
Cory Taylor- Midway
Max Beattie- Omanu
Chris Dawson- Midway

Scott Bartlett- Coach
Jason Pocock- Assistant Coach
Mark Weatherall- Manager
Steven Vaughan- Assistant Manager
Susan Pirret- Physiotherapist
Dr Caroline Stuart- Sports Doctor (non-traveling)

New Zealand Youth Team:

Madison Kidd - Papamoa
Maia Bryant - Papamoa
Ben Cochrane - Omanu
Olivia Eaton - Mt Maunganui
Jacob Hales - Papamoa
Jake Hurley - Mairangi Bay
Ben Johnston - Papamoa
Matthew Scott - Midway
Jasmine Smith - Wainui
Andrew Trembath - St Clair
Brittany Tucker - Sumner
Hannah Williams - Piha

Kurt Wilson- Coach
Jonelle Quane- Assistant Coach
Brent Wilson- Manager
Mike Ellis- Physiotherapist


Beach Flags world champions Olivia Eaton and Jake Hurley. Photo: Barbara Newton

For more information please contact: 

Lisa Honeybone, Media & Communications Specialist, SLSNZ
Phone 09 303 9335 or 0276 488 823