At 51, Mel Collins became the pending over 45 slalom record holder in January.
At 51, Mel Collins became the pending over 45 slalom record holder in January.

How Bundy landed Mel a new record

WATERSPORT: The wait was worth it in the end for Moura's Mel Collins.

Almost a month after competing at the Australia Day event at the Isis Ski Gardens near Cordalba, Collins got the message she wanted.

You have broken an Australian record.

Collins broke the record in the over-45 women's slalom waterski category at the event on January 26 and 27 but it needed to be checked by Waterski and Wakeboard Australia.

The Moura competitor had the rope length at 2@12 metres when she completed the slalom course at the event.

"Only certain sites are record capable," she said.

"The boat, the sites and other areas need to be surveyed to get it right."

The Isis Ski Gardens qualified for that, but then her actual run and technique had to be checked.

"The handle, the rope, everything is collected and checked," she said.

"Then once that is good they look at the video of the boat path to check that is good.

"I've lost records where driver error and their technique has cost me."

She's also missed out here before but this time it wasn't the case.

Collins is now a record holder in her age group.

"I was excited. It's what I wanted to do," she said.

Collins made definitive proof that she could make the record, not once but twice, when she was able to do it again at another meet in Victoria.

The effort was made more impressive considering the lack of training she has had.

Collins does her training on the Dawson River, near her home town.

A few months ago she couldn't do anything on the drought-stricken river as there was no water in it.

Now, after the deluge of rain the river is flooded, which prevents her from training.

So Collins has had to find other ways of training, including the gym.

"I've got a saying, 'do what ever it takes to make it'," she said.

"I'll get up at 3am to train if I have to."

The focus now is on getting even lower with the rope and breaking another record.

The feat near Bundy was her fourth Australian record, adding to 12 state records.

Her focus is on moving the rope another half a metre closer and trying to complete the course.

 

Mel Collins recently set an Australian record in a waterskiing meet in Bundaberg.
Mel Collins recently set an Australian record in a waterskiing meet in Bundaberg.

 

"When you get to the pointy end, the margins for personal bests get smaller," she said.

"When you shorten the rope, it gets harder and harder for us."

Collins is now one of the best in the world.

She is ranked among the top in the Australian rankings and is 12th overall in her age group in the world.

Collins admitted she couldn't get to where she is without the support of her family.

"I want to give a shout out to my partner Shorty (Darryl Shorten)," she said.

"Without him I wouldn't be able to get to where I am."

She will return shortly to the region to compete again.

She will compete at the Isis Ski Gardens on March 14 and 15 in another event for the club.

The aim is to maintain her form and hopefully break another record.



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