February 17, 2023

Koori Titles celebrate 25th anniversary

THE Woorrangalook Victorian Koori Surfing Titles (Koori Titles) has celebrated its 25th anniversary in style, with more than 200 people enjoying pristine surf and sunshine at Urquharts Bluff over the weekend.

Kicking off on Saturday with a traditional smoking and mixing of the water’s ceremony by Wadawurrung Elder Corrina Eccles, a fantastic day of both competitive and friendly fun would follow, with junior, open division and masters surfers enjoying the clean conditions.

Amid a strong field, the Open Women’s division was claimed by Elly Muir (Jan Juc), while Corrinna Eccles (Torquay) was victorious in the Masters Women’s.

An inclusive tag team event rounded out Saturday’s action with Geelong-based organisation Strong Brother Strong Sister taking first place, followed by CFMEU, Surfing Victoria, The Oldies, Ballarat and District Aboriginal Cooperative (BADAC) and South West.

Conditions would deteriorate on Sunday, but Rhys Collins (Red Hill) was able to reign supreme in the Masters Men’s division before the Open Men’s section was unfortunately postponed due to the dismal conditions.

The Men’s division will be run at the next Victorian Open Series event at Phillip Island, with Jordie Campbell (Torquay), Anthony Hume (Torquay), Rhys Collins (Red Hill) and Rylee Duell (Phillip Island) battling it out to secure a wildcard into the Rip Curl Pro Trials.

The winner will join Open Women’s winner Elly Muir in representing the Victorian Indigenous community in the event.

Surfing Victoria Indigenous aquatics officer Jordie Campbell said the event had come a long way from its humble beginnings in Warrnambool on Gunditjmara country in 1999.

“This event has become one of the hallmark events on the Victorian Indigenous Sporting calendar,” he said.

“Community come down to Wadawurrung Country from all across the state, and the event is now a real gathering of first nations community members.”

Surfing Victoria also awarded encouragement awards, which went to Arlee Livesey (Ballarat), Derek Wilson (Melbourne) and Indie Peverill (Ballarat).

Read Surf Coast Times story here.

Photo: Darren Cheeseman MP joins Wadawurrung Traditional Owner Corrina Eccles, Surfing Victoria Board Member Kate Sullivan and Surfing Victoria Staff for the opening of the Woorrangalook Victorian Koori Surfing Titles at Urquhart Bluff. Credit: Elley Harrison, Surfing Victoria.

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