Bronte Boardriders Qualify for Aussie Championships
Elite Athletes. Photo: Michael FairbairnThe boys from Bronte Boardriders will be heading to the Surftag Australian Championships after a big win at the South New South Wales State Championships, a one-day event held at Coledale in late February.
Ryan Clark, who surfed for Bronte at the New South Wales Championships, said that the win was an unexpected one for the team.
“We were missing two of our best surfers on the day, so we entered a team just hoping that we could qualify for the Aussies, maybe get in the top four, but we won the day,” he told The Beast.
Boardriders clubs compete in teams of five surfers, with Bronte’s New South Wales Championships team consisting of Mr Clark, Troy Stewart, Adam Perica, Caleb Reid and Adrian Kovacic.
The Australian Championships will take place from April 4-5 at Queenscliff Beach. With the competition just around the corner, the team is aiming to repeat their South New South Wales effort and take out the national title for Bronte.
“We just have to go out and do our best,” Mr Clark told The Beast. “We showed at State that you don’t have to be a favourite to get a good result.”
Mr Clark has been a member of Bronte Boardriders for twenty-five years, having joined when he was only ten years-old. The club is part of a network of 235 Boardriders clubs across Australia that promote a grassroots approach to maintaining the surfing community.
“There’s a great tradition across the country and lots of generations get involved. My older brother Cam is a member and now my son is too,” said Mr Clark.
“We’ve got to keep developing young surfers and encouraging them to work on their surfing and compete.”
The Bronte Boardriders club has active members from the age of six up to over sixty years-old.
Mr Clark is an advocate for anyone to join their local Boardriders club, particularly Bronte.
“Joining is a lot of fun,” he said. “You get the support of the local boys and it’s great to have good mates in and out of the surf. Plus, you get more waves at Bronte if you’re a Boardrider.”
While it’s the strength of their surfing that will win them the national championship, it might not only depend on the people in the water, and Bronte’s support team has always been an important contributor to their success.
“Bronte club’s strength is their spirit,” said Mr Clark. “We’ve got the best supporters’ club in the country and they definitely help us to do better at the comps.”
Bronte Boardriders will compete in the Surftag Australian Championships at Queenscliff Beach on April 4-5. You can follow them on Instagram at @bronteboardriders or come on the day to cheer them on.