And there was a bonus waiting for the boys when they turned their mobile phones on at the end of the day – messages congratulating them on their selection to represent Australia in the prestigious International Centenary Test Series at Bondi at the end of the month.
Jack Allis and his crew of Peter Charles, David Porzig, Kim Greville and James McLaughlin will now take on the best crews from South Africa and New Zealand in the three-Test series, to celebrate 100 years of Surf Lifesaving.
And if there was any doubt at all in the selector’s minds then they were certainly dispelled on Saturday when they took up from where they left off last year as the undisputed kings of Australian surf boat racing.
The non-stop day of racing saw the reigning two-time Australian champions dominate the “double race” Ocean Thunder final and they surged to the finish three boat lengths clear of Ego Platinum Austinmer and the new-look Reilly and Son’s Food Service crew out of Warriewood.
The women’s final saw an awesome display of endurance from The Surf Club, Mooloolaba who took the honours from the consistent Manly Aluminium Windows crew out of South Curl Curl, with Greenstone McMasters Beach third ahead of defending champions, Manly-Warringah Credit Union Queenscliff.
“North Cottesloe is definitely the benchmark in a hotly contested men’s series that’s for sure,” said race organiser Gary Watts.
“They are the dominant force in surf boat racing around the country and they showed that on Saturday – but in saying that, this Warriewood crew are the sleepers.
“Warriewood led the pointscore going into the final series and looked the goods in the semi-final rounds to determine the top four.“
They had a little bit of bad luck but I’m sure the longer the season goes the better they will get.
“But North Cottesloe have again set the standard of what is already shaping up to be what I believe will be the most exciting Thunder Series on record.
“We have spent the first two years getting the formats right and I believe surf boats are ready to really make an impact on summer sport.”
Warriewood, the former Bungan Beach crew, swept by Matt Collins, led through the first leg of the “double race” men’s final after mastering their trade mark start off the beach.
But they were hammered on the second run to the buoys, allowing Pure Blonde, under, to open up a commanding lead.
As hard as the Warriewood boys and defending champions Ego Platinum Austinmer tried, they could not peg back North Cottesloe crew who went on to win the final by three boat lengths, with Jack Patison’s Austinmer boys edging Warriewood for second.
The Warriewood crew Aaron Reilly (stroke), Rob Giblin (second stroke), Ian Bucknall (second bow), Josh Harrison (bow) and Fraser Giblin (reserve) are enjoying their first season with their new club after a celebrated career and a reluctant departure from Bungan.
They have caught the eye in the first two rounds of the Sydney Northern Beaches Surf Boat Premiership Series at Bilgola and Whale Beach and will be the crew to watch again at this Saturday’s third round at Avalon.
The Surf Club, Mooloolaba crew trailed South Curl Curl on the preliminary pointscore during the rounds but asserted their authority on the series with an eye-catching win.
“South Curl Curl certainly dominated throughout the day but you have to do in the final – and Mooloolaba did the job,” said Watts.
“I’m sure Chris (Flemming) will have his crew fired up for the reminder of the season and they’ll keep the rest of the crews honest.”
Watts also issued words of warning after seeing the Greenstone McMasters Beach crew out of the Central Coast grab third place in the final, ahead of Matt Hamilton’s Queenscliff girls.
“They are the under 23 Australian champions and this is their first foray into the open ranks and they were very impressive indeed,” said Watts.
The $100,000 series has attracted 24 men's crews and 12 women's crews from around the country. Dee Why will host rounds two and three in December and January before the final on February 16.OCEAN THUNDER, ROUND 1, DEE WHY, FINAL RESULTS:
Pure Blonde (Nth Cottesloe, WA) 24,
Ego Platinmum (Austinmer, NSW) 23,
Reilly & Sons Food Services (Warriewood, NSW) 22, PCL - Panz (Jan Juc, VIC) 21,
Ego E Batt (NSW) 20,
Ozwide Loans (Bulli, NSW) 19,
Rubelli (Sth Curl Curl, NSW) 18,
Byron Bay Premium Ale (Elouera, NSW) 16.5,
Surf Club Mooloolaba (Mooloolaba, QLD) 16.5, Skilled Services (Beach, NSW) 15,
Your Style (North Curl Curl, NSW) 14,
Sandran Property (Whale Beach, NSW) 13,
e-Go (Pacific Palms, NSW) 12
Cable Cage (Manly, NSW) 11,
Slattery (Half Moon Bay, VIC) 10,
(Whale Beach 2, NSW) 9,
Stockland (Currumbin, QLD) 8,
Dial B4 You Dig (Moruya, NSW) 7,
York Linings (Dixon Park, NSW) 6,
Hogs Breath (Rainbow Bay, QLD) 5,
Skilled (Avalon Beach, NSW) 4,
R-Marine (Salt, NSW) 3,
Martha Cove (Rosebud, VIC) 2,
Universal Resorts (Bronte, NSW) 1.
The Surf Club Mooloolaba (Mooloolaba, QLD) 24, Manly Aluminium Windows (Sth Curl Curl, NSW) 23, Greenstone (McMasters, NSW) 22,
Manly Warringah Credit Union (Queenscliff, NSW) 21,
Red Steer Hotel Motel (Red Steer Hotel Motel, NSW) 20,
PCL-Panz (Jan Juc, VIC) 19,
NR Perry Boats (Currumbin, QLD) 18,
Acacia Embroidery (Avalon Beach, NSW) 17, Skilled Services (Avoca Beach, NSW) 16,
RPQ (Met Caloundra, QLD) 15,
Dial B4 You Dig (Moruya, NSW) 14,
Dial B4 You Dig (Bondi Beach, NSW) 13.