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Queensland Open Water Championships

On 21st October, a team of 13 Surrey Park swimmers supported by coaching staff and team management travelled to the Sunshine Coast to compete in the 2011 Queensland Open Water Championships at Lake Kawana. 

A delayed flight departure from Melbourne on Friday and some misplaced luggage (more baggage recognition training required for one of the Club Captains) meant the planned training session at Kawana was adjusted to be a session in the surf at Mooloobala.  After dinner at Augellos (voted best pizza on the globe), the team settled in for an early night.

Saturday was race day and the boys were up early to be fed and transported to the course.  Good conditions prevailed and some competitive times were achieved by our boys.  The girls, having a later start time and as a consequence some more time in bed and a more leisurely breakfast, arrived to see the completion of the boys events as Codie came through to finish as the first male in a time of 55:03.60.

By the time the girls were ready to race, the conditions had deteriorated with an increase in wind across the course.  Nevertheless the girls got off to a great start with Hannah and Beth heading around the first buoy with the early leaders.  The girls stepped up and all achieved good times.

All swimmers competed in the 5km open age category taking away any complacency to just swim against age group rivals and to muscle up with the men and women.  Also the meet provided experience in some aspects of racing that are not offered in Hazelwood such as very large start groups which are no place for the timid.

Our medallists for the day were:

  • Codie Grimsey (1st Men’s Open 5km)
  • Hannah Tuohey (2nd Women’s Open 5km)
  • Bethany Robertson (3rd Women’s Open 5km)

With racing done it was time for short drive to Noosa for the team to do a recovery swim while one of the boys made some special friends with some of the local bird life.

Saturday night saw some local assimilation as the team joined the never-ending queue at the surf club for dinner followed by capturing some of the local sights along the Esplanade.

Sunday was another early start with the team up for a swim across Mooloolaba and back.  The return leg of the swim was a handicap event.  Even giving Coach Mike a 2 min 30 sec head start Codie managed to real him in him, and had time to swim laps around Coach Coop along the way.  Mike’s tactics of swimming ashore early and sprinting along the beach almost paid off.  While Mike was then resuscitated, the rest of the team enjoyed some time in the surf before breakfast and the flight back to Melbourne.

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