Portsea Junior Comp Team Season Review

The Portsea Junior Competition Team Committee has always sought to encourage participation in junior competition because we genuinely believe that it has a significant role to play in the development of the future leaders of our club and the broader community.  The personal growth of our team members throughout the 2018/19 season has been self-evident – from growing levels of confidence in the skills critical to surf life-saving through to the ability of the team to encourage and support each other in competition and, importantly, outside of the club.

The 2018/19 season saw 62 enthusiastic and energetic young members compete for Portsea, with many more joining in at the variety of training sessions held over the summer months.  The team was led by an outstanding group of young Under 13 team members – Jess Haintz, Miles Regan and Charlie Dowling – supported by Mackie Hunter and Gemma Woolrich. We have a saying within the team that you don’t need a title to be a leader, and this was embraced by the entire leadership group.  To see them articulate their passion for the club, their teammates and each other at our State Titles dinner was moving – and for me, the highlight of the season. Well done.

It is also important to recognise that it takes many volunteers to allow our young members to compete so effectively:

  • the tireless work of the members of our Junior Competition Team Committee – Sam Kerr, Darren Kerr, Nat Hood, Matt Colston, Amanda Benson, Ashley Slee, Nick Tissot, Meg Dowling, Kate Richardson and Simon Wilson.  It is important to recognise the outstanding service provided by both Nat and Meg who retired from the Committee at the end of the season;
  • the commitment of our coaching team led by Nat Hood, Marni Jacka, Kate Richardson and Henry Kiss;
  • the dedication of our Age Managers – Mike Haintz, Meg Dowling, Adam Deacon, Simon Wilson, Kate Richardson, Marni Jacka, Matt Colston, Amanda Benson, Stuart Larke, Ashley Slee, Fiona Lancaster & Kate Murchie; and
  • each of the parents and/or siblings who acted as either officials or water safety at LSV carnivals or at training – great to have you involved.

Without this level of volunteer support, we simply couldn’t put a team on the beach.  Thank-you for all that you do.

We are also fortunate to be supported by two generous sponsors – EY and Winnett – as well as the broader Portsea SLSC Committee.  Their financial support, provided over many years, has enabled us to allocate boards to every member of our team and ensure that they have access to high quality infrastructure and specialist training.

Finally, I would like to thank each and every member of our team – from the (slightly crazy) Under 8s squealing with delight as they experience their first carnival through to the parents who encourage, support and when needed, console members of our team as if they were their own.  We have a great team and I encourage you all to support Matt and Amanda as they jointly take on the Team Manager responsibilities for the forthcoming season.

Brett Croft – Junior Competition Team Manager