Blog by Patrick Falls, CCFC Competition Convenor
‘I’ve a mate who could stream it live’. It was one of the ideas that came up when the organisers first sat down to plan the Curtis Coast Freedive Challenge. Next it was being watched worldwide.
Adreno recently was among the sponsors of the Curtis Coast Freediver Challenge which was held over the 12th and 13th of October in Gladstone. The competition was a benchmark for future freediving competitions in Australia and the World, with it hosting a Live Feed with commentary and athlete interviews, thanks to Moviemadness.tv. The event also got behind a charity organization, DEBRA Australia making a donation to help kids with Epidermolysis Bullosa.
It saw 12 competitors, 9 male, 3 female, push for new personal bests as well as 6 National Records being set. Among the National Records were 3 Iranian Male National Records, Pejman Siavoshi being the first ever Iranian to compete, 2 Singaporean Male Records and an Australian Female Record. Jonathon Chong pushed past his previous Singaporean Dynamic Apnea Record and Dynamic No-fins Record while Amber Bourke pushed her Dynamic Apnea Record to 200m – being the first female in Australia to do 200m and quite happy to have reached this milestone ‘I came up clean and received a white card from Fran Rose. Still can't believe I did it!’.
Brisbane Freediver’s had the largest contingent of competitors coming in at 7, Curtis Coast Freediver’s reached 4 and Sydney Freediver’s were represented solely by Jack Hatfield. Jack did some great performances that ended up landing him in 2nd Overall, ‘I ended up just trailing in second with only a 10 point gap between Jonathon and myself and only a 2 point gap between Leigh Woolley and myself’
Dynamic No-Fins (DNF) and Static Apnea (STA) were held on the 12th with some amazing performances, which included Leigh Woolley pushing close to the Australian DNF Record of 175m with a 165m swim, Amber Bourke with a 151m DNF and Jonathon Chong persevering to 5:23 minutes in the statics. Dynamic Apnea (DYN) was held on the 13th, this was the first time in Australia it was run in heats with finals. Mark Williams won the Men A Finals with a 140m swim followed closely by Jack Hatfield and Richard Frost who both pulled up at 135m, but Richard received a penalty giving him 3rd for DYN. The Mens B Final saw Leigh Woolley do a 163m, but as this was the B Final it gave him 4th for DYN. Jonathon Chong got 5th with a 118m swim in the B Final but pulled a 126m swim in the heat – the new Singaporean DYN Record.
The Female Final was great to watch as all three competitors beat most of the males. Emily Shaw came up clean at 123m, Nicole Keating pushed to a new personal best of 155m and Amber Bourke with her National Record on 200m got 1st. The Overall Winners of the Curtis Coast Freedive Challenge were Amber Bourke and Jonathon Chong, receiving the Fran Rose and Wayne Judge Shields.
Full results can be found at https://www.facebook.com/CurtisCoastFreediversChallenge and the recorded streaming of the competiton can be found at http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/39762612.
An event like this couldn't have happened without the support of the volunteers through the 2 days. It was really great to see how much everyone got involved even the competitors were helping out where needed. I would like to thank the safety divers for doing an incredible job in and out of the water, the judges – Fran Rose, John Wright, Wayne Judge and Ben Noble, who did more than just judge, without their input the competition wouldn't have run so smoothly. Dan and his crew from Moviemadness.tv for doing a professional job with the live feed. The Sponsors, the support we got from you was outstanding. Wybrand Du Toit, you did an awesome job as the photographer. The competitors were an outstanding bunch and we look forward to seeing you all back again next year. Last of all the organizers, I look forward to doing another comp next year with you all.