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Surfing status boosted by centre

Great form: Cabarita surfer Brent Savage rides the waves in Bali. He is one of the new generation of talents benefiting from local training.
Great form: Cabarita surfer Brent Savage rides the waves in Bali. He is one of the new generation of talents benefiting from local training. Steve Robertson

A NEW national surfing training centre for Casuarina will cement Australia's status as a global leader in the sport, according to Surfing Australia chief executive officer Andrew Stark.

The beachside town was yesterday announced as the location for a two-level facility to support the development of more than 3000 elite surfers and coaches each year.

It is due to open late next year, when it will provide coaching accreditation and professional development courses to Surfing Australias' 22,800 members and 209 affiliated clubs.

“It's amazing for surfing. It's going to cement our position as the global leaders in surfing as we continue to produce world champions,” Mr Stark said.

“It's going to attract people from not just Australia but around the world. It's going to have a lot of profile around it.”

Federal Sports Minister Kate Ellis and Richmond MP Justine Elliot yesterday announced $2 million in funding for Surfing Australia for the centre's construction.

“The national training centre is expected to support the development of more than 3000 elite surfers and coaches each year,” Ms Ellis said.

“This infrastructure will play a key role in helping to maintain Australia's reputation as an international surfing powerhouse.

“Surfing as a competitive sport has grown in Australia over recent years and is now enjoyed by around 2.5 million Australians and is backed by a thriving industry.”

Ms Elliot said it would be a boost for the Tweed economy.

“Local tradespeople and contractors will be employed to construct and fit-out the building over the next 18 months, and an additional three full-time and four part-time coaches will be employed once the centre is fully operational,” Ms Elliot said.


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