George Bass Surfboat Marathon arrives New Year’s Eve

SURFBOATS and kayaks competing in the world’s toughest surfboat race are set to arrive on Narooma’s main beach on New Year’s Eve day.

Narooma Surf Life Saving Club vice president Ben Bate encourages locals and visitors to come down check out the spectacle that is the George Bass Surfboat Marathon and support the local teams.

The club is very proud of its team of eight rowers and sweep, as well as ski paddler Nick Ziviani, all of whom have been training and performing well in events leading up to the big race that starts in Batemans Bay this Sunday, December 29.

“We’re sending out our encouragement, and I hope they have great event and do particularly well,” Ben said.

“I also want to recognise the support crew who travel along with the team, without whom there would be no event, as well as some very understanding wives.”

The club is asking for any assistance from anyone who can help out.

The George Bass Surfboat Marathon is an endurance race like no other.

It consists of seven legs over seven consecutive days, featuring a mix of ski paddlers and surfboat crews from around Australia, as well as the Far South Coast.

Narooma is fielding a men’s veteran team, whose eight members have been training and competing in two boats to get maximum performance.

They took out both the Rooster Run on the Georges River and also the Club to Pub Race at Pambula Merimbula.

In the George Bass they will consolidate and compete in one boat under sweep Brendan Constable. The rowers are Unto Halopainen, Adam Morris, Johnny Davis, Jae Constable, Rod Patmore, Nigel Constable, Glen Wilton and Stuey Croser.

Narooma ski paddler Nick Ziviani has prepared well for the race – having competed in the Bass previously as a rower and a paddler, Nick spends most weekends touring the country, following the key races, competing at the highest standard.

Bermagui Surf Life Saving Club meanwhile has a mixed men and women’s team led by sweep Rob Shaw.

The race begins at Batemans Bay Bridge this Sunday, December 29 at 9am. Averaging 25km per day, the ski paddlers and surfboat rowers travel south, down the coast, finishing in Aislings Beach, Eden.

The crowd of support boats, buses, cars and camper trailers will arrive in Narooma on New Year’s Eve – view the boats travel past from a headland at Dalmeny or get down to the Surf Club to watch the spectacle.

Be there from 10am to cheer the boys on as they come home.

New Year’s Day will see the next 24km leg of the race begin in Narooma bound for Bermagui.

Spectators should arrive by 8am as the start will begin at 9am.

Anyone available to assist preparing breakfast, loading cars and trucks with food and equipment should contact club member Paul White on 0407 762 069.

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