City's Champion Patrol team went on an emotional roller-coaster ride at Sorrento on Saturday as the 2006 State Championships got underway with the Patrol and First Aid events.
The Champion Patrol competition puts a team of six through a lifesaving theory paper, resuscitation exam, patrol scenario, surf race and board-tube rescue.
As the defending champions, City's team of Grant Trew, Stephen Toth, Craig Simmonds, Kim Lovett, Rosie Langdale and Rebecca Cohen were well-drilled and looking to win another gold.
Things were going well up until the final event, the board-tube rescue, with solid performances in every other section leaving the team in a strong position overall. After leading the race from start to finish, it seemed the event was in the bag until the news was broken to the team that they had been disqualified for an incorrect buoy turn - meaning they were still in the overall event but would be scoring no points in that section.
It was a big blow to the team, who felt their chances of victory had slipped away. But when the final scores were announced, City were winners by less than a point from Scarboro.
The joy was short-lived however, as ten minutes later it was discovered that some sections had been scored incorrectly. The points were tallied again and in the revised result it was Scarboro winning the gold, with City having to settle for the silver medal.
The afternoon saw the running of the First Aid Championships. In this event a two person team takes on a first aid scenario and are scored according to their handling of the situation.
The Under 19 competition was held first, with Rosie Langdale and Kim Lovett representing City in their first ever attempt at this event. They put in a good performance, finishing in fifth place.
We had two teams in the Open event. Rebecca Cohen and Rupert Baker combined well to finish just out of the medals in fourth place. But the performance of the day went to Grant Trew and Stephen Toth who overcame the Patrol competition disappointment to bring the Open First Aid gold back to City for the first time in eight years.
Congratulations to all the competitors. The lifesaving events component of the State Championships continues in two weeks with the Champion Lifesaver events.