The New Zealand Black Fins demonstrated why they're the reigning world champions overnight (NZ time) as they moved into the pool rescue events at the 2016 Lifesaving World Championships in The Netherlands.
Their second day of competition at the Pieter Van Den Hoogenband stadium in Eindhoven saw them take the lead after some impressive displays from the athletes including a gold for Samantha Lee in the women's 100m Rescue Medley and team mate Laura Quilter right behind, taking the silver. In the men's, captain Andy McMillan took silver with Steve Kent taking the bronze.
Kent and Lee both took silver in the men's and women's 200m Obstacles while Natalie Peat took one in the women's 100m Manikin Tow, while also setting a new New Zealand record. Kent set a new New Zealand record in his 100m Manikin Tow heat with a time of 52.31, finishing 8th in the final.
Black Fins coach Jason Pocock says he's incredibly proud of how the athletes stuck to their plans and backed their preparation, especially when under pressure.
"Some stand outs were the usual superstars; Lee's 100m Rescue Medley plus Kent and McMillan in the 200m Obstacles and 100m Rescue Medley respectively. Quilter's three individual swims were superb and Peat's massive personal best for second in the 100m Manikin Tow was epic," he says.
Pocock says they were probably a bit unlucky in the line throw with Danielle McKenzie and Paul Cracroft-Wilson deserving more than their results show.
"But it was an amazing day of heart and belief. There are plenty of teams stepping up as seen by the world records being broken and the speeds in the B Finals, he says.
"We are looking forward to starting again in the morning. Thanks to everyone for their support."
At the end of Day Two, the Black Fins lead with 240 points ahead of France on 186 points and Australia on 182.
Over on the beach in Noordwijk, the New Zealand Youth team, the Junior Black Fins, kicked-off their first day of competition, making a dominating entrance, winning a total of 12 medals.
Some of the highlights included gold from the men's Tube Rescue team of Daniel Barron, Lewis Clareburt, Zac Reid and Seb Johnson.
Olivia Corrin took two individual silver in the Board Rescue and Surf Race with Clareburt also taking individual silver for the men's Surf Race.
Captain Hamish Miller took bronze in the male Ski and the men (Barron & Miller) and women (Grace Kaihau and Hannah Williams) both took silver in their Board Rescue.
Junior Black Fins coach Jonelle Quane says the team's first day of competition turned out to be a solid day of racing with Corrin starting off the medal tally with silver in the women's Board Race, shortly backing that up with a silver in the Surf Race.
"The team carried on winning numerous medals throughout the afternoon with some really close finishes with a gold medal still eluding us until the men's Tube Rescue final where our boys stepped up with a strong race leading from start to finish and winning our first gold for the Junior Black Fins," she says.
Quane says the team is very strong in their water events and continued that consistently onto the beach events where sprinters McCallum and Gedye added to the medal tally with very tight finishes. The beach relays rounded out the day providing some further exciting racing and nervous times waiting on results with both teams placing in the top three; the boys in second and the girls in third.
"Overall, the team performed superbly and showed a lot of pride and they are realising the opportunity that awaits over the coming days," she says.
At the end of Day One for the national youth teams' competition, the Junior Black Fins are in second place on 260 points, behind Australia on 283 points and South Africa in third on 176.
Overnight tonight (NZ time), the Black Fins will move on to their third day of competition in the pool at Eindhoven while the Junior Black Fins will have their second day on the beach in Noordwijk.
The biannual World Lifesaving Championships is the blockbuster event for lifesavers around the world. With several thousand competitors taking part, it is the largest international lifesaving sport competition in the world. All the events are based around rescue capability and are specific to saving people's lives.
The Black Fins are aiming to take out the national teams' title for the third time in a row after first prising the title from Australia in Adelaide in 2012 and again in France in 2014.
Day Two results
100m Manikin Tow:
Women's: Natalie Peat, 2nd (59.65) NZ record
Men's: Steve Kent, 8th (53.98) - new NZ record in his heat (52.31)
100m Rescue Medleys:
Women's: Samantha Lee, 1st (1.10.05) and Laura Quilter, 2nd (1.10.15)
Men's: Andy McMillan, 2nd (1.00. 87) and Steve Kent, 3rd (1.01.25)
Women's: Devon Halligan and Danielle McKenzie, 5th
Men's: Steven Kent, Andy McMillian, Chris Dawson, Max Beattie, 3rd
Women's: Laura Quilter, Natalie Peat, Samantha Lee, Devon Halligan, 3rd
Women's: Samantha Lee, 2nd (2.05.14) and Laura Quilter, 5th (2.08.95)
Men's: Steve Kent, 2nd (1.53.60) and Andy McMillan, 4th (1.55.73)
100m Manikin Tow:
Women's: Laura Quilter, 2nd (1.02.17)
Men's: Chris Dawson 3rd (54.29)
Men's: Paul Cracroft-Wilson and Chris Dawson, 1st
Junior Black Fins
Women: Olivia Corrin, 2nd and Grace Kaihau, 4th
Men's: Hamish Miller, 3rd
Women's: Olivia Corrin, 2nd and Hannah Williams, 7th
Men's: Lewis Clareburt, 2nd and Zac Reid, 7th
Women's: Alaynah Bettany, Hannah Williams, Libby Bradley, Grace Kaihau, 2nd
Men's: Daniel Barron, Lewis Clareburt, Zac Reid, Seb Johnson, 1st
Women's: Grace Kaihau, Hannah Williams, 2nd
Men's: Daniel Barron, Hamish Miller, 2nd
Women's: Jamie Gedye, 3rd and Libby Bradley, 15th
Men's: Javon McCallum, 3rd and Daniel Barron, 6th
Women's: Jamie Gedye, Grace Kaihau, Libby Bradley, Hannah Williams, 3rd
Men's: Seb Johnson, Daniel Barron, Javon McCallum, Zac Reid, 2nd
Black Fins team
Andrew McMillan- St Clair (captain)
Steven Kent- Titahi Bay
Max Beattie- Omanu
Cory Taylor- Midway
Paul Cracroft-Wilson- Fitzroy
Chris Dawson- Midway
Samantha Lee- Lyall Bay
Laura Quilter- Wainui
Danielle McKenzie- Mairangi Bay
Devon Halligan- Omanu
Natalie Peat- Papamoa
Olivia Eaton- Mt Maunganui
Coach: Jason Pocock
Assistant coach: Steven Ferguson
Technical Support Coach: Brett Robinson
Manager: Mark Weatherall
Assistant manager: Steve Vaughan
Physio: Susan Pirret
Junior Black FIns team
Alaynah Bettany - Lyall Bay
Grace Kaihau - Orewa
Hannah Williams - Piha
Jamie Gedye - Waikanae
Libby Bradley - Mt Maunganui
Olivia Corrin - Midway
Hamish Miller - Mt Maunganui
Lewis Clareburt - Lyall Bay
Javon McCallum - Fitzroy
Daniel Barron - Mt Maunganui
Seb Johnson - Sumner
Zac Reid - Fitzroy
Coach: Jonelle Quane
Assistant Coach: Matt Sutton
Manager: Ange Johnston
Physiotherapist: Mike Ellis
Black FIns Laura Quilter, Natalie Peat, Samantha Lee and Devon Halligan with their bronze in the women's 4x50m Obstacles.
Lisa Smith, Media & Communications Manager,
Phone 09 303 9335 or 0276 488 823