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More than 600 competitors took part in the 2014 Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria (VFBV) Rural State Championships at Geelong, wrapping up yet another successful year for VFBV’s State Championships.
Teams from all over Victoria battled it out, with 37 senior and 30 junior teams taking part in events based around the basic skills of rural firefighting, with hoses, pumps, ladders and putting water onto targets.
CFA Chief Officer Euan Ferguson said the organising committees made up of local volunteers did a great job with the enormous task of bringing together such large events involving teams and visitors from all over Victoria and interstate.
“It was another great year all round across the three different championships weekends, and I had the privilege to attend all of them.
“The VFBV Championships are always a highlight on the CFA calendar, and an opportunity for Brigades from all over Victoria to come together to build team spirit, develop individual and team skills, and promote camaraderie among Brigades, volunteers and their families.
“Not only do the Championships increase and maintain a level of physical fitness for competitors, but they improve skills with handling basic firefighting equipment.
“These events bring our CFA members and families together – and offer our members a chance to meet other members and renew friendships in a relaxed environment,” Mr Ferguson said.
The 2014 VFBV Senior Urban Championships, held in ideal weather in March at Bendigo, drew a crowd of 2,000 spectators to see 2,000 competitors from 67 teams competing in events designed around urban firefighting.
As with the rural championships, the urban events make for a useful addition to each Brigade’s regular training program and offer members an opportunity to build networks and relationships with other members that will ultimately pay off when they are called to work on statewide incidents such as large scale bushfires.
A highlight of the senior urban championships weekend was the torchlight procession through the streets of central Bendigo, concluding at the fire station.
The VFBV Junior Urban Championships, held in warm sunshine in February at Swan Hill, attracted more than 600 competitors from 71 teams and a crowd of 1,000 spectators.
The under 14 and under 17 events are also based on routine firefighting tasks and the numbers and enthusiasm of the competitors reflect the value of the work of Brigades everywhere in providing safe, enjoyable and challenging activities for young members of the community and training the CFA volunteers of tomorrow.
Volunteer Fire Brigades Victoria’s Peter Beaton said the organising committees were very pleased with the turnout to this year’s events.
“The championships are one aspect of VFBV’s role as the statewide network for CFA’s 60,000 volunteers.”
“The events continue a Victorian volunteer fire brigade tradition of more than 140 years.”
For full results, see the Championship section of the VFBV website at www.vfbv.com.au
The District 7 State Championship Committee would also like to thank its sponsors:
Quiksilver, GAAM, CFA, Tutt Bryant Hire, City Of Geelong, Salvation Army, Hino Trucks, Bendigo Bank, IGA St Leonards & Barwon Heads, Corio Waste Management, SEM Fire & Rescue, Britax Automotive Equipment, VFBV, Rapp Australia, Batesford Quarries, Simonds Homes, Harley Davidson Geelong and the Royal Geelong Agricultural and Pastoral Society for their assistance in providing the venue.