First up we to talkto Olympic debutante Jaime Roberts from Mullaloo SLSC in Western Australia abouther love of surf lifesaving, paddling and her journey to join the AustralianOlympic Kayaking team.
“I was a bit of a late bloomer to kayaking…I was working up north in Pilbara on the mines, driving a truck and listening to the London Olympics and the men’s K4 1000 was racing,” Jaime said.
“I didn’t really know what kayaking was, but I knew a few surf lifesavers that did this sport called ‘kayaking’… and all four in that Australian boat were surf lifesavers.
“I rememberlistening to the race getting really excited, and they ended up winning Olympicgold which I thought was so awesome.
“I suppose I madethe connection going hang on a second…maybe I could go to the Olympics and dosomething as special as what they have done.”
We then chat withSurf Life Savings’ most successful and decorated athlete, Maroochydore’s ClintRobinson OAM – a five-time Olympian with a complete set of Olympic medals, 36Aussies Gold Medals, 13 Aussies Open Ski titles and four World Championshipkayaking medals.
At only 19 Clintwon his first Aussies Open Ski title in 1991 and the next year achieved whatmost athletes only dream of, winning an Olympic Gold medal at just 20 years-oldin the K1 1000M at the Barcelona Olympics, 1992.
Clint went on todominate the scene at the Australian Surf Life Saving Championships for thenext decade and a half, winning 13 Open Ski titles between 1991 to 2008, whileonly dropping two races between 1991 and 2003.
In 1999, Clinteclipsed legendary Ironman Trevor Hendy’s record of 30 Aussies Gold medals, andcurrently holds the record for the most Aussie gold medals ever won – astaggering 36 gold medals.
A true champion ofboth Australian kayaking and surf lifesaving, Clint has been inducted into theAustralian Sports Hall of Fame, the Surf Life Saving Hall of Fame and wasawarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) for his achievements.
And finally, wecatch up with Tugun SLSC’s Bernadette Wallace who explains how she never thoughtshe was an athlete, she always focused on becoming a champion lifesaver and now,having overcome some significant medical hurdles, is on track to make herOlympic debut in Tokyo next year as part of the Australian Canoe Team.
“I didn’t think of myself as an athlete as a youngperson, I thought that was my brother and sister and that was their thing… Ididn’t think that was for me but what I did really like doing was hanging outwith my friends at the surf club and what that turned into was a lot of time ona variety of crafts,” Bernadette said of her start in surf lifesaving.
“We became very competitive at champion lifesaverwhich turned into being very very competitive at R’n’R… if anyone’s ever donechampion lifesaver you need to know everything that is written down in thatblue book.
“I think having the work ethic and attention to veryfine details as a young person resulted in me winning as an athlete … because Iknew the fine details of what I had to do to win.”
To find out more about each of these stories makesure to tune into Episode Seven of Surf Studio this Wednesday nighton the SLSA website and SLSA Facebook page.
Surf Studio is regular online show with each episode featuringstories from around Australia and covering a range of topics such assport, lifesaving, leadership, education etc and Surf Life SavingAustralia encourages everyone to be involved. If you, or anyone you knowhas a story that you would like to share via Surf Studio please email email@example.com