Darren Halse: a shy bodyboarder

Darren Halse has taken the 2011 Kumba West Coast Classic, in South Africa. The bodyboarding event hosted by the Boland Bodyboarding had to be surfed in inconsistent two-foot waves, as the predicted drop in swell was confirmed.

The Grand Masters were sent in on the higher tide so that the other divisions can utilise the lower tide later in the morning. Len Bradford and Marcel Habets looked like they were having a free surf, trading off waves and having fun. Marcel Habets walked away the winner with Len in second place.

Sean Oberholzer led his Masters final from the start and never looked back. Melvin Victor places second with Morne laubscher and Lee Moran placed third and fourth respectively.

In the Ladies' final, the tide had dropped just enough for the contestants to surf the main reef infront of the judges. Lindi Stemmet and Kim Richardson had some good scores but it was the consistent Janeke De Kok who won the Ladies title.

Tristan Roberts had been a standout through the entire event and was in some amazing form. His form just kept flowing when he entered the water for the Boys final. It was a fairly comfortable win for Tristan but, newcomer to the South African Bodyboarding Associations events, Tim Bowman kept Tristan on his heels and won a deserving second next to Tristan. Robert Cooke and Robert Marx were third and fourth respectively.

The Mens' final had a tough time with waves in their heat. Mathew Webster won the trophy, followed by Chris Vanm, Michael Mayer and Andrew Raath. The DK Final started with a bizarre and unfortunate incident. With the waves becoming quite inconsistent, Vaughn Harris timed his first wave to perfection, paddling into his opening wave a few seconds after the siren sounded the start of the heat.

It was a well shaped wave and Vaughn went up to give the lip a bit of a whack, but little did he know a rider from the previous heat was still in the competition area and was taking off on the section Vaughn was about to hit. The two riders collided and Vaughn did not complete the move.

In the end, he had to settle for fourth position. The battle was between Simon Heale and Sean Tickner. Sean used his smooth carving style to end up with the win he worked hard to get. Simon opted for the lefts off the split peak and claimed second next to Sean. Joshua Kleve couldn’t keep up with the top 2 and settled for third.

In the Juniors' final, Storm Prestwich pushed the lead early on until Mathew Lombard started answering back with wave after wave packing in as many high scoring moves as possible, finishing on dry rocks on a few occasions. It turned out to be an extremely close final especially between the top 2 riders. In the end it was Mathew Lombard who took the win followed by Storm, Jason Fowler and Sebastian Koopmans.

The Pro final followed and Mathew Lombard had to stay in the water and gear up and surf the big prize money final. David Lilienfeld used his tall frame and long arms to land huge rolls but couldn’t keep up with Keith Milward and Darren Halse. David settled for third. Keith was machining every wave and was looking for the win. Darren decided to paddle back to the main reef on the farmers stretch of reef.

His patience payed off and he picked up a good bowling wave which allowed him to ARS off the first section and roll the end section. With that wave he sealed the Pro title along with the R6000 cash prize along with various amazing product prizes.