We have over 120 annual members plus around 100 social members who attend our club rounds. Members range from 6 years old through to over 70 years, both male and female.
We stand to provide a surfing club with a family culture in Cronulla. We create an environment to surf together, compete, provide experiences for our members and have a junior surfing pathway with programs and representative opportunities.
Surfboard riding clubs in the shire sprang up everywhere during the 1960s following the split of boardriders from the surf clubs.
The first was Cronulla and its female counterpart, the Cronulla Wahines, followed over the next decade by St George, Eastern States and Wanda Beach Boardriders.
Many of these clubs didn’t last very long but the renaissance of modern club surfing really began with the Midway club. When this club folded Cronulla Sharks Boardriders was reborn from the foam dust of Gordon and Smith Surfboards in 1978.
Ostensibly a vehicle for their young sponsored surfers like Mark Occhilupo, Richard James and Michael Mackie it was the first boardriders club to really stand the test of time.
Photo: John Veage
Boardriders clubs have existed for decades in Australia with no real government, council or surf club support. It is a true grassroots sport – Cronulla’s first presentation in 1978 was in the lifeguard tractor shed at Wanda.
With surfing being included in the 2020 Olympic Games this is all starting to change with state and national bodies growing a groundswell of backing.
Cronulla was formed as a competitive outlet and it has gone on to have the most local competitive success.
There was a golden period for Cronulla in the 90’s with three straight NSW titles, winning the national surf team title in 1990 and finishing runner-up in the Australian Surf League in 1993.
Photo: John Veage
Victory followed in the inaugural Sydney surfing premiership with a team of juniors which showed the club’s depth with four surfers at the one time on the world tour.
1999 world surfing champion Mark Occhilupo, Gary Green, Richard ‘Dog’ Marsh and Ian ‘Ratso’ Buchanan all competed together on tour with club junior champion Jake Spooner and Todd Prestage following them.
Kirk Flintoff was the last qualifier in 2005 and the club now has a big junior division led by champion Jay Brown who are the future stars trying to get to the holy grail of surfing.
Cronulla was also a groundbreaker for female surfers with 20 years of women’s champions led by Lindsay Noyce, Rachel Campbell and Paris Whittaker.
Boardriding clubs are more than competition with club member Luke Madden the current CEO of Surfing NSW and former club champion Andrew King the former Surfing Australia head coach.