Surf training facility: respect, they will do it!

Australia is set to maintain its tag as the world’s premier surfing nation, with the federal government pledging $2 million to Surfing Australia for a dedicated training facility at a media conference at Casuarina, NSW today.

As part of its commitment to the sport, Surfing Australia will build the world’s first purpose-built high performance training facility at Casuarina, Northern NSW to support our elite athlete development pathway.

Minister for Sport The Hon Kate Ellis, Member for Richmond The Hon Justine Elliot along with a host of past and present Australian world surfing champions including 7 x ASP Women’s World Champion Layne Beachley (Sydney, NSW), 1978 ASP Men’s World Champion Wayne “Rabbit” Bartholomew (Coolangatta, Qld) and 2009 ASP Men’s World no.2 Joel Parkinson (Coolangatta, Qld) were present for the day’s announcement.

Surfing Australia Chief Executive Officer Andrew Stark said the surf training facility would be internationally recognised as the world’s best practice for high performance surfing development.

“This is a monumental day for Surfing Australia and will ensure our continued domination of international surfing into the future. We are extremely appreciative of this support from the Federal Government,” he said.

“We now have an opportunity to transform and evolve surfing in Australia to ensure that we stay ahead of the rest of the world as the number one surfing nation. For some time now, Australian surfers have been at risk of falling behind our international rivals who are increasingly investing in bridging the gap. Through this new purpose built High Performance Centre we will be engaging the very best in sports science and cutting edge athlete performance technology to ensure Australian surfers have the absolute world’s best training environment. We will be working with the Australian Institute of Sport to ensure our facilities and training techniques are cutting edge and that they result in continued world champion results.”

Surfing Australia Chairman Norm Innis agrees that the facility will lead the way in surfing development.

“The new High Performance Centre for Surfing at Casuarina will not only be the centre of excellence for the sport in Australia, but it will be the leading facility of its kind around the globe,” he said.

“As such, it should cement Australia’s “World No. 1” position for surfing performance, and coaching and officiating development, for many years to come.”

Surfing in Australia has become an important part of the Australian culture and today more than ever the sport of surfing is truly synonymous with the Australian sporting landscape.

“Surfing is a healthy, whole of life national sport and a part of the Australian ethos and culture,” added Stark. “It is vitally important we continue to produce Australian world champions for our sports development and success into the future. The strength of our sport development pathway and massive participation numbers of 2.5 million per year are affected by international success. This is evident in many Australian sports and this new facility will ensure we continue our international success into the future.”

“Along with a new national training facility, we will be working closely with the Australian Sports Commission to build a stronger national high performance system and culture that will see our elite surfers supported and serviced at all levels of the event and athlete pathway. This is truly an exciting time for our sport and will ensure many podium results into the future for Australian surfers.”

Surfing Australia proposes to construct a new multilevel building on a dedicated freehold title, which was gifted to Australia’s peak body for the sport of surfing by Consolidated Properties.

Once complete, the training facility will boast world-class education facilities, administration offices as well as treatment and conditioning rooms. This would be combined with skilled coaches and cutting-edge sports science sports medicine services.

Elite surfers and coaches would not only have state of the art facilities at their fingertips but also have access to specialist programs and the facility’s extensive resources.

The facility will be based on the wave rich Northern NSW coastline at Casuarina Beach. This strategic location is 15 minutes south of the world class Gold Coast point breaks, but enough distance away to allow training and coaching in idyllic conditions with uncrowded waves.

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