International Surf Rescue Challenge teams announced

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Surf Life Saving New Zealand is pleased to announce its Open and Youth teams, known as the Black Fins and Junior Black Fins, to represent New Zealand at the 2017 International Surf Rescue Challenge (ISRC). 

The beach competition, which is held every two years, is a gathering of the world's top lifesavers and originally started in 1939 as the Trans-Tasman Series between Australia and New Zealand.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand is proud to be hosting the 2017 ISRC at Mount Maunganui from Thursday November 30 to Sunday December 3.

Eight national Open teams and five Youth national teams are confirmed to take part including Australia, Great Britain, South Africa, USA, Canada, France and Japan.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand Sport Manager Mike Lord says the ISRC is a major event on the High Performance campaign calendar.

"It is an important part of testing our beach athletes on an international stage as part of our preparations for the 2018 Lifesaving World Championships where New Zealand will be looking to take the title for the fourth consecutive time, he says.

"The event will be the first time the Black Fins have competed in New Zealand since 2011 which is also something to look forward to."

The New Zealand Open (Black Fins) and Youth (Junior Black Fins) teams includes 12 athletes each; six male and six female.

Half of the Open team are World Champion Black Fins including Danielle McKenzie, Devon Halligan, Natalie Peat, Olivia Eaton, Cory Taylor and Max Beattie, along with Junior Black Fin Lewis Clareburt who this year moves into the Open ranks.

Joining them will be Carina Doyle who is also representing New Zealand at the 2017 World Games in July and 2016 Olympians Kayla Imrie and Marty McDowell.

The remaining spots are filled by High Performance squad members, sprinter Kodi Harman and board champion Nick Malcolm.

Mr Lord says it is a very strong team of athletes with a lot of international experience.

"Danielle, Devon, Natalie, Olivia, Cory, Marty and Max were all part of the New Zealand team for the 2015 ISRC in Australia so their knowledge of the event will also be a big advantage as well as getting to race on home soil," he says.

The Youth team sees a mixture of returning athletes and newcomers.

Libby Bradley, Zac Reid and Olivia Corrin most recently represented New Zealand with the Youth team at the 2016 World Lifesaving Championships. Olivia, together with Bayden Botha, also represented the Youth team at the 2015 ISRC and she is due to represent New Zealand at the World Games in Poland this July along with Oscar Williams who has also been named for the 2017 ISRC.

Some of the newer names in the team come from rising stars Claudia Kelly, who came away with nine medals at this year's national championships. Ahead of the ISRC, Claudia will also represent New Zealand at the Sanyo Cup in June along with Libby, Bayden and fellow ISRC team members Samalulu Clifton and Lincoln Waide.

For the remaining athletes Sophie Sanford, Tessa Bradley, Aidan Smith and Mitch Cowdrey, the 2017 ISRC will be their first taste of representing New Zealand on an international stage.

New Zealand Black Fins

Carina Doyle- St Clair
Danielle McKenzie- Mairangi Bay
Devon Halligan- Omanu
Kayla Imrie- Paekakariki
Natalie Peat- Papamoa
Olivia Eaton- Mt Maunganui
Cory Taylor- Midway
Kodi Harman- Papamoa
Lewis Clareburt- Lyall Bay
Marty McDowell- Titahi Bay
Max Beattie- Omanu
Nick Malcolm- Mairangi Bay

Jason Pocock- Coach
Mark Weatherall- Manager
Steven Vaughan- Assistant Manager
Kevin Morrison- Assistant Coach
Jonelle Quane- Assistant Coach
Brett Robinson- Assistant Coach
Daniel Grant- Assistant Coach
Susan Pirret- Physio
Sam Mayhew- Doctor

New Zealand Junior Black Fins

Claudia Kelly- East End
Libby Bradley- Mt Maunganui
Olivia Corrin- Midway
Samalulu Clifton- Mairangi Bay
Sophie Sanford- Omanu
Tessa Bradley- Mt Maunganui
Aidan Smith- Papamoa
Bayden Botha- Mairangi Bay
Lincoln Waide- Mt Maunganui
Mitch Cowdrey- Papamoa
Oscar Williams- Piha
Zac Reid- Fitzroy

Matt Cairns- Coach
Matt Sutton- Assistant Coach
Shane Smith- Manager
Simone Spencer- Assistant Manager
Mike Ellis- Physio

Congratulations to all of the selected athletes.


For more information, please contact:

Lisa Smith, Media & Communications Manager, SLSNZ
Phone 0276 488 823