YOUNG North Devon surf lifesavers went in at the deep end in the National Surf Lifesaving Nipper and Junior Championships at the Cardiff International Pool, some not having competed at this level before.
Croyde Surf Lifesaving Club sent a team of 28 Nippers, aged from seven to 13 years. They won 10 gold, one silver and six bronze medals and took sixth place in the 21-strong team event.
Medal winners were: 11-13 years board relay girls – gold, Charlie Edge, Millie Hood, Sian Lewis, Nicole Short; 11years board rescue girls – gold, Lauren Short, Annabelle Franklin; 11 years board rescue boys – gold, Sam Nevill and Lachlan Davies; 9 years girls board – gold, Holly Nevill; 9 years girls manikin – gold, Holly Nevill; 13 years board rescue girls - bronze, Nicole Short and Charlie Edge; 11years boys board – silver, Sam Nevill; 11year boys board – bronze, Harry Dowling; 11 years boys manikin - bronze, Sam Nevill; 12 years boys manikin – bronze, Alfie Stone; 13 years board girls – bronze, Millie Hood
Team members - Jessica Nevill, Isobel Cooke, Ava Wilson, Holly Nevill, Millie Edge, Alice Hood, Hannah Hatton, Lauren Short, Annabelle Franklin, Alice Dowling, Jasmine Wilson, Charlotte Edge, Sian Lewis, Nicole Short, Millie Hood, Samuel Taylor, Luke Cooke, Benjamin Hatton, Ollie Gysin, Jack Tapscott, Taylor Duff, Jai Priscott, Sam Nevill, Joseph Dokarkar, Harry Dowling, Lachlan Davies, Charlie Taylor, Alfie Stone. Next day was the turn of the Juniors and Croyde had a team of eight - Jasmine Bennett, Olivia Bennett, Millie Hood, Holly Greenway, Charlie Greenway, Joe Wright, Max Goodwin, Stefan Griggs.
Four girls and four boys put in great performances in the junior section. with Millie Hood, in her first year in this category, taking bronze in the Super Life Saver. The team was placed 14th in a field of 21 teams.
A squad of 35 Nippers from the Saunton Sands club included many who had not competed at a national level before.
They competed in a number of life saving based events, including a board rescue and a manikin carry as well as several relays and achieved fourth place in the team event.
Joint Nipper team manager Rob Barnes said “We are absolutely thrilled with how the day has gone. The children have worked really hard to train over the winter. They have demonstrated a real sense of teamwork and achieved a fantastic fourth place in the competition behind stiff opposition from the Woolacombe, St Ives and Portreath Surf Life Saving clubs.
Saunton Nippers’ national squad: Sadie Barnes, Erin Fraser-Smith, Hope Unstead, Jake Bricknell, Louis Nobes, Harry Thomas, Isobel Howgate, Emma Toogood, India Martin, Daniel Trapnell, Zachary Adams, Rupert Pocock, Ruby Barnes, Bethany Ansdell, Ella Fraser-Smith, Emily Barnes-Connor, Anna Worms, Paige Unstead, Emma Featherstone, Laura Fraser-Smith, George Pocock, Sammy Watts, Seth Nobes, Georgia Adams, Alfie Pocock, Ryan Poole, Finlay Clark, Fergus Dunbavin, Kyran Mcmanus, Francesca Ansdell, Morgan Howgate, Lily Derges, Marley Purchase , Alex Howgate, Kane Shaw.
Saunton Nippers will now be training on the beach at Saunton Sands on Monday and Friday evenings from 6.30 to 8.00pm. Everyone is welcome and the club offers free taster sessions. Contact 07557 407150 for further details.