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Year Awarded: 2016
Sport: Surfing
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Tayla Hanak - Surfing

Tayla grew up close to the ocean on the Fleurieu Peninsula of South Australia, where she was naturally drawn to the water.


Her surfing career began as a 12 year old in 2009. After winning various U16, U18 and Open State Titles before the age of 15, Tayla quickly realized her passion for surfing and desire to become a professional surfer.

At age 16 Tayla moved away from home, to be closer to better waves, while she completed her final years of schooling at Investigator Collage Victor Harbor. During this time she not only self funded her surfing career but also all other costs associated with living away from home.

In 2014 Tayla not only completed year 12 with marks in the top 96% of the state but also became the first South Australian Junior female to ever win an Australian Title when she took out the U18 Australian Titles.

Now competing on the World Qualifying Series Tayla recently took it upon herself to moved half way across the country to the Gold Coast where she trains at Surfing Australia’s world class High Performance Center.

In October 2015 Tayla will represent Australia in the ISA World Junior Surfing Games in Oceanside, California.    

Mentor:  Layne Beachley AO

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When considering the stature of an athlete or for that matter any person, I set great store in certain qualities which I believe to be essential in addition to skill. They are that the person conducts his of her life with dignity, with integrity, courage, and perhaps most of all, with modesty. These virtues are totally compatible with pride, ambition, and competitiveness.