On the latest Awards of Excellence special of Surf Studio, we chat with 2020 Athlete of the Year, reigning Nutri-Grain IronWoman Series Champion Lana Rogers from Alexandra Headlands SLSC about her first series win and what she’s looking forward to this season.
Lana started in lifesaving as a Nipper at Cronulla SLSC at the age of five, with her father credited as being a major influence on her accomplished surf and swimming background.
“My dad was a surf champion as well; my sister and I were straight into all pool events and open sports. Dad coached us growing up and we moved to Queensland; he’s been with us all the way, so I’m really thankful to have that guidance,” Lana said.
Since first qualifying in the 2016/17 Nutri-Grain Iron Series, it’s been a five-year journey for Lana to get to where she is today as IronWoman Champion and 2020 Athlete of the Year.
“My coach, Sharlene Kelly, was always with me. Throughout the last few years, we’ve really been working together, especially on the one-percenters and what makes those races yours. Honestly, I wanted the Coolangatta Gold more than anything,” she said.
“It was twenty weeks of hell, but now I’m used to it and I’m trusting the process, it just seems to be working. I’m going to keep going and make the most out of my surf IronWoman career,” Lana said of training for the Gold in 2019.
After a gruelling pre-season, last year saw Lana take out the prestigious Coolangatta Gold title that doubled as round one of the series, followed by back-to-back wins in rounds two and three, with her worst result a third in the fifth and final round.
“Yeah it was pretty crazy. I went into the season wanting the Coolangatta Gold title, that’s all I was focussed on, that’s what I was training for,” Lana said.
“I think my coaches obviously had more of an idea what my season was going to look like more than me because I was just focussed on the Coolangatta Gold.
“But it just kept flowing, I trusted the process and I trusted my coaches and it seems to work so I’m going to try and do that this season and fingers crossed see what happens.”
Lana recently won the Alex Unbreakable as part of the 2020 Coolangatta Gold festival and is heading into her fifth series in the 2020/21 Nutri-Grain IronMan and IronWoman Series.
To hear more from Lana on her phenomenal season last year which helped earn her the 2020 Athlete of the Year title, make sure to tune into episode fifteen of Surf Studio on the SLSA website and SLSA Facebook page.
That draws a conclusion to our long-form episodes of Surf Studio for 2020. Over the past seven months we have shared members stories over 15 episodes in an effort to provide hope, share information and help the movement stay connected during the difficult times of COVID-19 restrictions.
As summer approaches and we look to return to the beach, stay tuned for a new-form Surf Studio, bringing you shorter stories from the movement as they come to light.