We asked SA team captain Faye Zoetmulder to give us the low down on Day 5 of the INS ISA World Surfing Games currently taking place in Costa Rica. Here she fills us in on the comradery, the results, conditions and surviving the sweltering Central American climate…
Zigzag: What have the conditions generally been like in Costa?
Faye: The conditions are pretty much the same everyday, clean and offshore in the morning but by about 9:30am the onshore comes up. The tide change is really drastic so we have been trying to watch everyday. I think it is actually a blessing that we are all going through the Repecharge Round because we get to surf more heats and get familiar with the conditions and the climate.
What’s the vibe like amongst the team?
The team and the spirit is so cool! They are quite young but really solid and level-headed. Jordy is like the funny hooligan cracking jokes every minute, he was obviously a bit bummed to get knocked out but to see him still happy and keeping the whole team alive is really cool. Shane is such a level-headed guy, he knows exactly what to do out there in the heats. He looks after everyone even though he is one of the youngest. Dylan has been sick which has been unfortunate. He stayed at the resort yesterday and watched us online. Matt is a big sweetheart and shows wisdom beyond his years. And Tanika I’ve done a lot of travelling with. We all get along very well, there’s no bad vibes. Johnny is stoked and does his thing as manager.
What went down with the SA Team on Day 5?
Myself, Tanika and Shane all surfed in a row and our heats were at quite a good time in the day. The tide started going low with lefts peeling all the way to the beach from the rip bowel. I managed to get a win in my heat, Tanika had quite a solid heat after me coming second and then Shane absolutely smashed his heat.
Matt’s heat was later on and it was pretty intense. He had the last remaining Australian in his heat. He was sitting quite far down the beach and we were pretty stressed out because the other guys were sitting in front of the contest tower and getting some good waves but Matt just held his own, he had pinpointed where he wanted to sit and it worked out for the best as he got that 7 in the last minute, so we are stoked. Another solid day for South Africa!
We hear Costa is cooking. How is the team managing the, quite literal, heat?
It is so hot here! I reckon if there’s no air vent indoors it’s about 45 degrees straight. I have about eight showers a day just to keep wet and cool. A massive thunderstorm came in yesterday, which I’m kinda grateful for because we all got pretty sunburnt yesterday. It has been important for us to adapt to the climate a bit more everyday. You have to drink about five liters of water and stay in the shade as much as possible. In between heats we’ve been going back to the hotel and just resting in the aircon rooms.
What has the experience of representing SA been like?
We are all really appreciative for what Surfing South Africa has done for us, putting us up in the hotels and getting us here. Everyone is really proud to be representing South Africa, especially now that surfing is in the Olympics. We are all just really stoked.
*Lead Image: Shane Sykes. Photo © ISA / Evans