Surf Sports Youth Athlete of the Year
Will Savage, Trigg Island SLSC, WA
Will commenced in the Nipper ranks inspired by other champion athletes and is now a role model to many aspiring nippers at Trigg Island and across WA through his work with SLSWA Nipper Clinics. He is always willing to promote lifesaving and has provided his services in videos involving partners and sponsors of SLSWA. In the 2019 Western Australian Surf Life Saving Championships, Will was the first person to win Gold in both Open and U17 Ironman and at the Australian SLS Championships won a swag of awards. He was selected in the Western Suns Interstate State team as an Open competitor while only in his first years as U17. Will won the Matthew Barclay Memorial Trophy, and as the Barclay family were unable to present it, Will traveled to North Burleigh to thank them personally.
Ned Lennox, Carlton Park SLSC, TAS
Ned is an outstanding athlete who has achieved excellent results through a combination of skill and hard work. He has taken his individual and team contribution to another level as he continues to mature as an athlete and a person. He has accumulated an admirable list of successes including in the highly competitive 2018 Coolangatta Gold; representing Tasmania at the Interstate Championships at Newport Beach and competing at Aussies 2019, making the U19 ironman semi-finals and swim final. He is a leader and role model for our junior members and others, and most importantly never cuts corners in reaching his goals.
Kayla Roe, Grange SLSC, SA
Kayla’s hard work and consistency has amounted in an impressive list of successes, including nine Gold Medals in her age group as well as four more in Under 19s and Open age groups, making three Australian titles finals, a Silver Medal in the 2 km run, and the finals of the ironwoman and ski finals at the World Titles. She has been a talented high performing athlete, being selected in the 2018/19 State Team after her outstanding performance in the SA U17 Open Ironwoman. Her work ethic and dedication to life saving are outstanding as are her leadership and team Skills. She is an outstanding Patrol Leader, assists in training, and is a mentor to younger members. Kayla is the first qualified pilot in the SLSSA Drone Program. Her gracious and polite behaviour has been noted on all occasions.
Brayden Casamento, Warrnambool SLSC, VIC
Brayden is an enthusiastic member of his Club, and while achieving admirable success in competitions and carnivals he is always willing to be involved across a range of other community activities from water safety for local swims to school sessions and fundraising events. He involves himself in Nippers programs and the mentoring of future lifesavers. He has achieved multiple medallions and certificates, including Bronze, Silver, IRBC, Spinal Management, ARTC and first aid. Brayden has won 12 Gold, six Silver and two Bronze medals at State Level. At a National level, he made the final of the board relay in both U17 and U19. He was awarded the Maurie Raynor Scholarship for U19 excellent sportsmanship and lifesaving skills, and the coach’s award, Male Competitor of the Year along with Male Club Champion. He sees his achievements as a way of getting Warrnambool SLSC’s name on the map.
Naomi Scott, Manly LSC, NSW
Naomi has been an outstanding patrol member, role model and competitor not just for Manly LSC, but for NSW and Australia, dominating in her individual events and achieving amazing results at State, National, and international competitions. She has recently returned from Japan, after representing Australia in the Sanyo Bussan Lifesaving Cup, with the Opens Team winning the competition. She was selected as Co-Captain of the Australian Youth Team at 2018 World Titles. Naomi coaches younger Nippers at Manly, combining water discipline with weights and running training. She was chosen as one of the faces of the elite Ironwomen series competitors in a SLSA promotion, showing young members and the community that elite athletes are also regular patrolling members, working to keep the public safe.
Lani Pallister, Alexandra Headland SLSC, QLD
Starting out as a nipper at Alexandra Headland in the under 7’s, Lani’s commitment to surf sports has resulted in many great achievements at Branch, State, National and International levels. Breaking a World Life Saving record at the 2018 National Pool Championship was just the beginning of what would be an outstanding 18/19 season for Lani. Taking out first place with a stellar performance in this year’s 2 km Aussies Ocean Swim and a competitive finish in the Open Female Surf Race, it’s clear to see that Lani’s dedication and passion to her craft has made her a dominant figure in female surf sports. Lani’s selection in the Australian Life Saving Team – High Performance Squad is a clear reflection of her extreme surf abilities and value as a member of the surf lifesaving community.
Surf Sports Athlete of the Year
Jackson Symonds, Sorrento SLSC, WA
Jackson achieved outstanding results in 2018/19 forming part of the winning Australian Lifesaving Team at the 2018 World Championships. He made history when he won his fifth Open Beach Sprint title at the Australian Championships as well as undefeated in the beach sprint event at all other major competitions including Interstate Championships, Western Australia Championships, Ocean6 Wanda, WA Surf League, and Curl Curl 1000. Jackson advocates good sportsmanship both within and outside of the competition arena and is sincere in his appreciation of his team of coaches, surf club, fellow competitors, officials and family who have supported his surf sport journey. Jackson values the opportunity to give back to the next generation of surf lifesavers through coaching and mentoring.
Stephen Blizzard, Burnie SLSC, TAS
Stephen’s history with Burnie Surf Life Saving Club stretches from joining as a six year old, clocking up 25 years of dedicated service. As one of the more senior competitors he led from the front with his ski paddling, winning every ski race at the Tasmanian Surf Lifesaving Championships and helping the Club retain the Champion Club title for the fourth year in succession. His greatest achievement has been winning the Open Single Ski title at Tasmania’s premier event; runner-up in the Men’s Masters Single Ski and a semi-finalist in the Open Men’s Single Ski at the Australian Championships. Stephen shares his knowledge with other Club members, helping with training and encouragement. He supports Tasmanian SLS events as a commentator and continues to drive Burnie SLSC in the right direction for success.
Benjamin Zuill, West Beach SLSC, SA
Benjamin is a long-standing champion in surf sports in South Australia. He is a well-known and respected athlete both in South Australia and at interstate competitions. A great role model, Ben inspires developing athletes to achieve their goals. He has won numerous ski paddling, swimming and Ironman championships. His successes include representing the SA Team for the ninth year; SA Ironman champion for the fifth year, and the State Open Swim champion. He also won the Seacliff Swim, Paddle, Run (SPR) Endurance Event, winning it three times since its inception. Ben coaches the swimming program for members from nippers to masters, and coaches developing paddlers with board and ski technique. He is a much valued and inspirational member of the Club.
Jackson Borg, Newport SLSC, NSW
Jackson’s most outstanding achievement in the 2018/19 season was silver medal at the Worlds Open Ironman event amongst a high-quality field. His other achievements at Worlds include finalist in Open Board, Open Swim, Open Ski and Rescue Tube Rescue. In the New South Wales Championships, he won gold in the Open Ironman and Surf Teams, as well as gold for Taplin and Board Rescue at Branch level. Jackson’s strong team ethos, swimming excellence and sportsmanship were also evident during his Australian, NSW and Sydney Northern Beaches representative teams performances. Beyond competition, Jackson is a great ambassador for Surf Life Saving setting the bar high with respect to training, patrolling commitment, club fundraising, Surf Life Saving education, and mentoring of junior competitors at Newport SLSC.
Georgia Miller, BMD Northcliffe SLSC, QLD
In 2018/19, Georgia became the second person in history to win the triple crown status within the one season taking out the Coolangatta Gold, Nutri-Grain IronWoman Series and Australian Ironwoman titles. She was also a member of the successful Australian Life Saving Team which competed for 10 days straight at the World Life Saving Championships, winning the swim race, ski race, ironwoman, board rescue, mixed taplin relay, and tube rescue. She also represented BMD Northcliffe at the Interclub World Life Saving Championships. Georgia is an active club member and great role model completing her patrol hours every season and supporting young athletes.