LIHUE — Eugene Ancheta topped the Beach Flags event Thursday at the Nautica United States Lifesaving Association National Lifeguard Championships at Manhattan Beach, Calif.
Ancheta, one of six Kauai lifeguards/coaches who accompanied the 20-member team to the nationals, earned a gold medal in the Men’s 45-49 age group for Beach Flags.
Similar to the Junior Lifeguard event, which ran Wednesday and saw Wailana Gandeza find gold in her age group, the adult version saw the lifeguard start from a prone position on the beach, rise, turn and race to obtain a baton or beach flag, buried upright in the sand about 20 meters away from the start.
In addition to Ancheta, Kauai lifeguard Bruce Stine was the only other Kauai scheduled to compete in events at Nautica.
Age group champions for lifeguards were crowned in the Surf Boat Race, Iron Woman, Iron Man and Beach Flags on Thursday.
Visit www.usla.org for more information.
• Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.