26 August, 2013 26 August, 2013

Stepping Stones – Billabong Junior Series Continues to Deliver Champs

The Billabong Junior Series has been around since way back when Galen Hossack was dishing out some Cape Town clout; Davey Weare, Wok and Ricky Basnett were the Durban threat; J-Bay’s Warren Tuck was in amongst it all; and a lightning fast Slummies ripper named Royden Bryson was thrown in the mix to add the spice to the early years.

Ricky Basnett and Royden Bryson are just two successful Billabong Junior Series graduates.

Ricky Basnett and Royden Bryson are just two successful Billabong Junior Series graduates.

The Series has been the stepping stone (and for some the stepping down) for aspiring pros wanting to crack it on the world tour for over a decade, and it has been a good gauge for young rippers to show if they’ve got the mettle to take the step up to the big leagues – and many Bong Junior Series champs have done so – Royden Bryson did; so did Davey Weare; Ricky was on tour and set records; Rosy and Bianca were both champs; and now Jordy Smith tops the list of Billabong Junior Series graduates that have made the step up.

The truth was – if you weren’t winning or making the finals at your local Junior Series, then there was no way you were going to cut it on the world stage.

Time will tell if Under 16 champ Jordy Maree will follow in his predecessor's footsteps, but for now he's racking up the heat wins.

Time will tell if Under 16 champ Jordy Maree will follow in his predecessor’s footsteps, but for now he’s racking up the heat wins.

But more than this, the Series has been a rad place for the younger groms to work on their natural competitive spirit; make friends for life; push each other’s surfing to the levels that South Africa are competing with the best; and to win some freakin’ prizes…

All of this happened again this weekend, when Diran Zakarian and Emma Smith claimed the premier Under 20 titles at Long Beach for the third leg of the 2013 Billabong Junior Series. The event took place over two days in really contestable waves, which allowed competitors to once again raise the roof on their performance.

Like Diran did all the way to the final.

Diran sets the bar at Long Beach.

Diran sets the bar at Long Beach.

Of course, Diran and Emma were just some of the stars of the show. We’ve selected a collection of the raddest moments from the rest of the ripping crew – which you can check out in our gallery here – and the final results you can find below.


Under 20 Boys:
1st – Diran Zakarian
2nd – Steven Sawyer
3rd – Mikey February
4th – Jarred Veldhuis

Under 20 Girls:
1st – Emma Smith
2nd – Heidi Palmboom
3rd – Anoush Zakarian
4th – Chanelle Botha


Under 18 Boys
1st – Max Armstrong
2nd – Josh Smit
3rd – Jason Harris
4th – Josh Olive

Under 18 Girls:
1st – Chanelle Botha
2nd – Gina Smith
3rd – Anoush Zakarian
4th – Crystal Hulett


Under 16 Boys:
1st – Jordy Maree
2nd – Steffen Burrows
3rd – Ntando Msibi
4th – Matt McGillivray


Under 14 Boys:
1st – Adin Masencamp
2nd – Ford van Jaarsveld
3rd – Jake Elkington
4th – Ethan Fletcher

Under 14 Girls:
1st – Sophie Bell
2nd – Kai Woolf
3rd – Kirsty McGillivray
4th – Zoe Smith


Under 12 Boys:
1st – Max Elkington
2nd – Bradley Drummer
3rd – Angelo Faulkner
4th – Tide-Lee Ireland

Official press release below.

South Africa’s Best Junior Surfers Tackle Solid Surf In Cape Town


Diran Zakarian went massive in the Under 20 Boys final.

Long Beach, Kommetjie, Cape Town – The final day of the Billabong Junior Series event #3 presented by BOS was action-packed, with red-hot surfing and good waves, as Cape Town experienced a balmy winter day along with a clean winter swell. Much like yesterday, the waves at Long Beach were predominantly left-breaking at the low tide, but as the tide came in the waves improved, and there were left and right-breaking waves for the juniors to let loose on.

Our top juniors did not disappoint, with huge turns and shorebreak punts the order of the day. The finals were hard-fought, as surfers striving for series wins all put their best performances in, wanting to secure as many points as possible before the 4th and final event of the series.

In the U12 Boys division it was Max Elkington from Hout Bay who performed the best, winning the final from Bradley Drummer (Kom) in 2nd, Angelo Faulkner (JBay) in 3rd and promising Durban surfer Tide-Lee Ireland in 4th.

Durban’s Sophie Bell came out victorious amongst the U14 Girls, utilising the good wave conditions to rack up some big scores and win over from the three Jeffreys Bay girls – the competitive Kai Woolf in 2nd, Kirsty McGillivray in 3rd and Zoe Smith in 4th.

In the U14 Boys division Adin Masencamp from The Strand turned it on in the finals with some clean carves and solid finishes to win from local Kommetjie surfer Ford Van Jaarsveld in 2nd, Jake Elkington (HoutBay) in 3rd and Ethan Fletcher (Hout Bay) in 4th

Jordy Maree from Kalk Bay showed his experience in the U16 Boys final, and displayed the potential to take his surfing to the next level. He was up against Stellenbosch surfer Steffen Burrows in 2nd, Ntando Msibi (Durban) in 3rd and Matt McGillivray (JBay) in 4th.

Warner Beach surfer Chanelle Botha is no stranger to the victory podium, and she continued along her winning ways by taking out the U18 Girls division with some high-scoring moves, with Gina Smith (JBay) in 2nd, Anoush Zakarian (Melkbos) in 3rd and Crystal Hulett (StFrancis) in 4th.

Local surfer Max Armstrong was always going to be a threat in the U18 Boys division, knowing the waves of Long Beach so well. He didn’t disappoint, carving all the way through the final and pulling off some tight backhand moves in the Long Beach shorebreak. Max won ahead of Josh Smit from Warner Beach in 2nd, Jason Harris (Durban) in 3rd and Josh Olive (Kom) in 4th


Emma Smith from Jeffreys Bay was a firm favourite in the U20 Girls, and it was no surprise that she took the win with relative ease from Heidi Palmboom (Bluff) in 2nd, Anoush Zakarian (Melkbos) in 3rd and Chanelle Botha (Warner Beach) in 4th.

In a blistering U20 Boys final, it was Melkbos surfer Diran Zakarian who came out blazing, and took the win with some futuristic surfing and big moves. Fellow goofy-footed surfer Steven Sawyer (JBay) was a very close 2nd place ahead of local Kommetjie surfer Mikey February in 3rd and Jarred Veldhuis (JBay) in 4th.

The VonZipper Flair Up Award went to Diran Zakarian for a massive frontside air that he pulled off in the U20 final, which helped him on his way to victory. “This was the sickest surf event,” said Zakarian on receiving his awards. “I’m so glad to have been a part of it. Thanks Dutchie.”

The DaKine Youthful Movement Award went to Mikey February for a pop-shuvit that had the Long Beach spectators cheering.

The Nixon Winner Takes All (WTA) award of a Nixon Player watch for the Highest Heat Score went to Max Elkington for his score of 16.25 out of a possible 20.

There is also a Sportsmanship Award of a return ticket to Bali with four nights accommodation valued at R17k for the surfer who displays the best sportsmanship over the series, as well as the BOS Surfer Of The Series award of cash and prizes valued at R20k. These two prizes will be handed out at the final event in the series, which was set to take place at Seal Point, Cape St Francis, 21 -22 September. Please note that there has been a slight change with the dates for this event. Due to massive entries, an extra day has been added, and the event is now set to run from Saturday 21 to Monday 23 September. Details to follow.

The Billabong Junior Series presented by BOS is sanctioned by Surfing South Africa, recognised by the Dept of Sport and Recreation as the national controlling body for surfing. The events form part of the Pro Surf Tour (PST).


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