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History for Mount surf lifesavers

06 September 2016

History for Mount surf lifesavers


Mount Maunganui's champion surf lifesavers have created more history, taking their club to the national pool rescue title in Auckland over the weekend.

Mount won the Paul Kent Memorial Trophy - testing the swimming and pool-rescue skills of nearly 600 athletes from 33 New Zealand clubs - for the first time, dominating the three-day carnival and finishing with 127 points. That put them 40 points clear of second-placed Mairangi Bay, with defending champions Papamoa third on 81.

It comes just seven months after Mount's incredible win at the beach nationals in Gisborne, where they stormed to their third consecutive overall points win and held aloft the Alan Gardner Trophy for the sixth time in the past nine years.
Their weekend win meant they were the first club in history to hold both the beach and pool-based national titles and coach John Bryant was understandably jubilant.
"This is a really proud moment for the club and a pretty sweet moment in my coaching career," Bryant said.  "To have those two trophies sitting side-by-side in the clubroom is unheard of and it's something all our athletes can cherish.  It shows them just what can be achieved with hard work and it's pretty reassuring to the general public that their beaches are patrolled by some of the best in the business."
Young and old contributed to the win, with 14-year-old Lochlainn O'Connor picking up 10 medals - five gold and five silver - and national records in the 100m rescue medley, 50m swim with fins and 4x25m manikin relay.  His 16-year-old teammate Libby Bradley also nabbed a New Zealand record in the 100m rescue medley, with her 1.19.69 time taking nearly 2secs out of the old mark, and adding gold in the 200 obstacles swim and bronze in the 50 manikin carry and 100 manikin carry with fins.
Open star Adam Simpson, after a breakthrough season on the beach with national championship medals in the ironman, run-swim-run and surf race, continued his progress with victory on the 100m manikin tow, heading off New Zealand team members Steve Kent and Chris Dawson.
"Spindles (Bryant) and I talked after pool champs last year about really making it a focus for the winter season and we had a long build-up that started back back in May," Simpson said. "We've had a few more opportunities to race this season, going to the Northern Region pool champs and over to the Australian nationals with the New Zealand squad, and that made claiming my first individual national title pretty special, after having learned a lot from Steve Kent and other open squad members. It

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