Images by Brandon Kilbride
The 2012 Kalk Bay Shootout was held in cooking 4-6 foot waves this past Friday (28 September) in what most are calling the best waves they’ve seen at K-Bay since the storm of 2008. A rare 5m south swell, produced by a late winter front, marched into False Bay in the early hours of Friday morning, giving the much anticipated event the green light after two months of waiting.
Pulling into the refurbished parking lot at dawn, contestants and spectators alike were met with slightly wobbly, 6-foot waves breaking on dry reef in the low tide, southerly onshore. The scene was set for the start of what was a unique event, featuring dual heats with both surfers and bodyboarders in the water at the same time – no bad vibes, no hassling, just some hardcore Reef surfers doing what they love.
The morning conditions proved to be very difficult for everyone, and many early round competitors suffered from serious beatings and some broken boards by the infamous Reef, but as the day progressed the wind swung offshore, the tide filled in and the swell cleaned up to produce the prized conditions everyone loves at Kalk Bay. Highlights from the event include watching young Jordy Maree threading his way skillfully through to the quarter finals in waves easily double over head, Ian Armstrong dropping into the biggest sets of the day and making some unforgettable barrels, and of course seeing Josh Salie take the win after a very consistent, on-form performance at his homebreak. In the bodyboarding division, Jayden Alford Loots retained his crown as Shootout Champ, beating Aden Kleve in the final.
Josh and Ian Armstrong went head-to-head in the semi-final of the standup division, with Ian having some smokers but struggling to make it out of the solid bombs. With five minutes to go Josh stroked into a smoker of a barrel and had the whole car park hooting and whistling after his glorious exit. Paddling back out he lucked into another bomb, setting himself well ahead of Ian to take the win and his spot in the final. Progressing through from the other semi-final was another local Justin Stevens. Locals Josh and Justin battled it out in the perfect surf with both contestants logging some great rides. But it was the in-form Josh who proved to be unbeatable and who paddled in the overall winner on a day where the camaraderie between competitors as well as Kalk Bay itself were the real stars.