Badges take to their boards

Sargent Tristan Murray and Constable Justin Rishton eyeing up the surf at Omanu. Photo: Bruce Barnard.

The Police will be hitting the beach – not for crime fighting but to try and tame the waves.

The Bay of Plenty is known for its beaches, and this year Omanu Beach will be hosting more than 85 men and women of the force in its waves.

The annual Police National Surfing Championships is coming to Tauranga from March 20-24, and cops are streaming in from far and wide to try their board in our surf.

Tauranga Police Sargent Tristan Murray is eager to get on his board and out in the ocean.

“It’s a bit of a break from the rigors of policing.”

And officers from the length and breadth of the country will be travelling up to Tauranga to show off their skill and get some downtime on the beautiful Bay beaches.

“Some of them are coming from as far as Christchurch and from right up the top of the North Island,” says Tristan.

With nine divisions, including divisions for over 40s, 50s, 60s, women’s and novice, Tristan says there’s something for everyone to enter.

“Some of the surfers are nationally-rated surfers so they’re right up there in the national scene.”

And though there will be trophies and medals for the force’s best, Tristan says the competition is more something different to do with his workmates.

“The main aim of the competition is the enjoyment of getting down to the beach with your colleagues.”