Day one of the 2014 Hurley SA champs kicked off in small but contestable conditions at Lower Point, Jeffreys Bay. With a consistent two to three-foot groundswell groomed by a steady offshore, there were more than enough walls for the Under 15 and Under 17 Boys to show the judges what they were capable of.
While the rain made for an awkward start, it quickly burnt off with the sun popping out for intermitted spurts, reminding us that it’s still Spring. The vibe of the crowd certainly didn’t reflect the conditions – you could smell the anticipation of the spectators as they sensed that the conditions, along with the surfing, were only going to get better.
Standouts of the day included local favourite, Matt McGillivray, who paddled out to claim victory in the first heat of the day. Ethan Fletcher also impressed, as he rode the highest scoring wave of the day – a straight 8.00. Koby Oberholzer and Sebastien Williams also showed good form, demonstrating that they have every chance at taking the win. Cape Town’s Jordy Maree can’t be ruled out either, as he claimed the highest heat total with a 14.25.
Sebastian Williams, throwing some tail with style to burn.
One of the more memorable moments of the day had to be Paul Samson, a complete underdog from the Development team, who shocked everyone by klapping his heat and taking the win with a solid lead in his Under 15 Boys Round 1 heat. Keep an eye on this guy as the competition develops, he’ll be sure to turn some heads while smashing lips.
It all looked pretty good from this angle.
Amidst the micro shredding, talks were had with some of the more established names in SA surfing. Mikey Feb dropped some useful advice onto the pricked ears of the up and comers, while Frank Solomon and his shaper Dutchie spoke about big wave surfing and the importance of board design.
Richard Kidd in some colder waters, representing for his KZN team.
In keeping with the tradition of previous years, Skull Candy will be giving some rad prizes to the province displaying the best team spirit. After witnessing Bonginkosi Ntuli, a traditionally dressed Zulu warrior mascot (and latest addition to the KZN team) race enthusiastically across the rocks in front of the event (spirit shield in hand), it’s clear that they’re right up there in the running for some lekker new headphones.
Matt McGillivray, gaining some early momentum.
With the small waves and rising spring tide, the comp was unfortunately put on hold at around 3:00pm due to dwindling wave size.
Competition will resume tomorrow morning at 7:30am with the Under 15 Girls kicking things off. The swell is due to pick up for Day 2, so there should be some good conditions for competitors to showcase their A-game.
Check out highlights from day one below.
Get all the results from Day one and more at surfingsouthafrica.co.za, or check out the official press release below.
FOR IMMEDIATE PUBLICATION
Wednesday 8 October 2014
Hurley SA Junior Champs
A Premier Surfing South Africa (SSA) event
Lower Point, Jeffreys Bay
8-12 October 2014
Jeffreys Bay provides clean contestable conditions for Day 1 of Hurley SA Junior Champs
The Lower Point at Jeffreys Bay provided clean contestable conditions for the opening day of the 2014 Hurley SA Junior Champs where the country’s top young surfers will be competing for sought after national team and individual titles.
The premier junior event on the South African surfing calendar runs from 8 to 12 October at the Mecca of South African surfing and will crown champions in age divisions including Under 13, U15 and U17 for Boys and Girls. The provincial team accumulating the highest points total clinches the coveted Freedom Cup.
The small waves favoured the light-footed competitors and with hordes of surfers and their supporters lining the rocky point and overlooking dunes, J-Bay local and Eastern Province top seed Matt McGillivray gave his teammates plenty of reason to cheer as he started the defence of his U17 Boys title by winning the first heat of the event.
McGillivray and heat runner-up Bevan Willis (KwaZulu-Natal Central) advanced directly to Round 3 of the division while third and fourth placed Rigter Markgraaff (Boland) and Brandon Lange (Southern KZN) will compete again in cutthroat 15 minute Round 2 heats tomorrow.
Eking every ounce of energy out of the waves, the provincial top seeds held sway in most heats with Donovan Wichmann from defending Freedom Cup holders Western Province, Shane Sykes (KZNC), Michael Monk (Border) and Matthew Sills (SKZN) all winning their respective match-ups.
The U15 Boys heats followed a similar pattern with Sebastian Williams from hosts Eastern Province, Jake Elkington (WP), Adin Masencamp (Boland), Koby Oberholzer (KZNC) and Luke Malherbe (Border) all finishing on top in their clashes.
Defending U15 Boys champ Ethan Fletcher (WP) posted some of the highest scores of the day while Paul Sampson from the SA Development Academy caused the biggest upset by racking up a comprehensive heat win and booking a berth in Round 3.
The enthusiasm on the beach was electric as the various teams loudly supported their teammates in the surf. KwaZulu-Natal Central have included Zulu warrior Bonginkosi Ntuli in their team and his energetic performances in full regalia on the beach every time a KZNC surfer was competing will certainly contribute towards the team’s chances of capturing the coveted Skullcandy Team Spirit Award.
In addition to the prestige of securing a place in South African surfing history, surfers will also be competing for several special awards totalling more than R12 000. These include the Red Bull Best Air, Oakley Highest Heat Score, Island Tribe Best Tube, Skullcandy Team Spirit Award and two surfboards shaped by Matt Biolos from Mayhem.
All Aboard Travel (www.all-aboard.co.za) will be giving one lucky surfer a flight to join a photo-shoot surf trip with Zigzag Surf Mag (www.zigzag.co.za) that will see them featured in one of the magazine’s photo editorials.
The Hurley SA Junior Champs can be followed via:
Hurley South Africa | www.facebook.com/Hurley.ZA
Hurley SA | @HurleyZA | www.twitter.com/HurleyZA
Twitter (Results Only):
As part of Surfing South Africa’s commitment to transformation, the South African Development Academy team is participating thanks to a grant from Sport and Recreation South Africa.
The Hurley SA Junior Champs is sanctioned by Surfing South Africa (SSA) which is recognised by the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and Sport and Recreation SA as the national governing body for the sport. SSA is a member of the International Surfing Association (ISA), the world’s governing body for surfing.
The 2014 Hurley SA Junior Champs is supported by Red Bull, Vans, Skullcandy, Neff, Island Tribe, Oakley, All Aboard Travel, Christian Surfers, Zigzag, Supertubes Foundation and Surfing South Africa.