Club relies on 'Team Minnie' spirit at championships
SURF LIFE SAVING: While they are commonly referred to as the 'country cousins' of local surf life saving giants Coffs Harbour and Sawtell, Minnie Water Wooli SLSC are set to make major waves at the NSW Country Championships.
'Team Minnie' will be sending one of their strongest contingents to the two-day event at South West Rocks with about 40 members from nippers through to boat crews taking on the championships.
The nippers contingent will be riding a wave of momentum after last weekend finishing third at the North Coast branch titles in Urunga up against formidable opponents in Coffs Harbour, Sawtell, Woolgoolga and Urunga.
Minnie Water's Terri Jackson said there were a number of factors contributing to the improved success of the club and it all starts with the competitor's attitude.
"Firstly, the overwhelming sense of team spirit that is Team Minnie,” she said. "The support each member gives the others is immense. It was a notable comment from other teams at the Urunga competition.
"Also the local support by Grafton Toyota was another unbelievably helpful aspect to our great results. Grafton Toyota garnished the club so the lifesavers can purchase new equipment and improve the training and development of the nipper program.”
About 1400 competitors are expected to descend on South West Rocks today for the first day of the Country Championships which is the annual highlight for surf lifesavers outside of metropolitan regions.
The Minnie Water-Wooli nippers will be competing in a number of events over the two days, including flags, beach sprints, ironman and iron woman as well as the iconic march past event.
With plenty of talented athletes on show, Jackson said it would be tough for the Minnie Water kids to shine.
"It will certainly be an eye-opening experience for them this weekend,” she said. "The events will be taking it to the next level of competition and they will get a great hit-out.”
"It will be tough but we are confident they can remain competitive, they have improved so much and our team spirit is very alive. We are looking for a handful of finalists and that would be a good result.”
Yamba Surf Life Saving Club will also send a 28-strong team, roughly half of them nippers.