Mt Maunganui Lifeguard Service have continued their dominant run on home sand after winning the Eastern Regional Senior Championships (ERCs) this weekend.
Using their home advantage and their large team of skilled athletes, the Mount pushed their lead out to win the event by 72 points after the two-and-a-half-day competition that saw more than 850 athletes compete along the Mount Main Beach.
The team took 15 wins across the various events in different age groups, including the Taplin, beach relay, board relay, board rescue and ski relay.
Their local knowledge may have also helped with the swell varying throughout the weekend.
The weather provided another challenge, hovering between 25C and 27C.
Finishing in second were Waikanae from Gisborne with 81 points, edging out their nearest rivals by five points.
Omanu finished in third, making it a 1-2-3 for the eastern region clubs.
Auckland's Mairangi Bay just missed out on a podium finish after finishing in fourth, only five points behind the third place-getters.
Rounding out the top five were Piha, from West Auckland, who ended up with 69 points after the annual carnival.
ERCs event manager Mark Inglis said it was another hugely successful ERC event and he commended the athletes and volunteers for their efforts during the weekend.
"Overall, the Eastern Regional Championships has been a great success. The competitors put on a really good show all weekend and raced hard but fair. It was great to see a lot of friendly rivalry which I'm sure will only build over the next few weeks ahead of the TSB Surf Life Saving Championships," Inglis said.
"I would also like to thank everyone who helped make this event the huge success that it was. A special thanks has to go to all the volunteers and officials who stood out there in the heat to keep our athletes safe.
"Plus, of course, a huge congratulations has to go to Mount Maunganui for their win and another impressive performance at the Eastern Regional Championships."
With the ERCs now over for 2018, focus turns to the New Zealand Representative Challenge taking place today on the same beach in Mount Maunganui. Top athletes from around the country, including some from the New Zealand team (Black Fins), are set to take part in the one-day hit-out.
Eastern Regional Championships — Top 5
Mount Maunganui Lifeguard Service, 153
Waikanae Surf Life Saving Club, 81
Omanu Surf Life Saving Club, 76
Mairangi Bay Surf Life Saving Club, 71
Piha Surf Life Saving Club, 69
Omanu Surf Life Saving Club, 32