27 March, 2017 27 March, 2017

A Day Of Barrels At The 2017 Rolling Retro

The 2017 Rolling Retro contest saw waves that the locals claimed to be the best Llandudno has ever been – quite a claim but the images seem to back it up. The waves were absolutely cooking with sizey, clean barrels churning out all day. See what event organiser, Captain Kai, had to say and check the epic gallery below!

Jasper Eales on a pearler.

Running a surf event can be very difficult, what with the weather, wave conditions and of course people’s expectations. Rolling Retro contest director, Captain Kai, took some heat calling it off twice before the event finally ran this past Saturday. What a good call it was though, as Llandudno, the wave gods and weather all came together for one of the most incredible days in surf history!

Standing on the beach early, with the low tide, there were some rather mutant looking tubes on offer, so first up were the bodysurfers. The gents valiantly took on some heaving pits and the judges were hard pressed to separate performances, but in the end it was local, Ed Millat, who took out the title of best bodysurfer and the attendant rewards.

Barrels like this all day long.

The local bodyboarders were up next and continued to keep the crowd, building on the beach, on their feet, as we saw multiple tube rides and some explosive finishes. John McDonald, old local, who has been working away from Cape Town, returned to his old stomping ground and put in a notable performance. His double tube almost took the title, but Aden Kleve, with an incredible drop knee, double knee and prone performance was the clear winner. In the free surf later, Aden got one of the best tubes of the entire day and almost took the best tube award too.

Moving into the surfing, as the tide pushed in, the waves just got better and better and the crowd on the beach started getting really excited. You could hear shouts of joy, cries of wonder and groans of pain as surfers charged the ethereal waves. Yuca Deureese, visiting from Europe, was the stand out lady in the water, handling the heaving peaks with ease. There were very few Groms surfing the event, but Brad Scott, paddled out with his dad and got one of the best tubes of the early heats to take out the Grom title.

As the afternoon waned and the party swung into motion, the incredible performances continued as the waves just got better and better. In the water, surfers like Robby Schofield (Best Tube Winner), Teager Eales (Best turn), and Jacques Smit (Best Variety) were reveling in the best Llandudno in years, while on the beach, Dunty Latrobe aka Tank Girl (Best dressed Lady) and Dale Swanepoel (best dressed Guy) were leading the party charge.   

Before the final heat hit the lineup, the entire event got together on the beach to honor a very special woman, Sandy MacDonald, who had passed the previous weekend. Sandy had been involved with every Retro since the beginning and Robby MacDonald and her family were surrounded by a circle of love as we celebrated her life and paid her memory honor as only surfers can, with love, noise and joy!

Matt Bromley right at home.

The final heat of the day had people claiming the best surfing they have ever seen, with locals Josh Brodie, Jasper Eales and Ike Forsythe going head to head in the heaving tubes on offer. New member to the Hout Bay community, Dale Staples, was the standout though. Threading amazing tubes, getting the wipeout of the day on the wave of the day and doing one of the biggest turns ever seen in Cape waters, he was the Surfer of the Contest.

Prize Giving went mad, the Runaway Nuns fired up the crowd with live punk music and Mix N Blend and Ike ensured the dancing went late into the night. All in all an incredible day!

A huge thank you to everyone involved and especially the incredible sponsors El Jimador, Striped Horse, Red Bull, Billabong, Von Zipper, Hurricane, Vudu Surf and Captain Kai’s World.

All Images By Ian Thurtell unless otherwise stated. 

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