- 12 August 2008 | Surfing
As the largest surfing event in Australian history draws closer by the day, anticipation continues to rise in the lead-up to the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival.
With 23 Australian titles to be awarded in 21 divisions, and the best surfers across the nation ready to converge upon the wave-rich Port Macquarie region, the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival is set to begin this weekend.
The will kick-off the Festival with a bang - featuring a simmering selection of world-class talent.
Running as a part of the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival, the Oxbow Australian Longboard Titles will see the best longboard riders from across the nation converging upon Port Macquarie.
Former World Champion (2006) and three-time Australian Champion, Josh Constable (Noosa, QLD) is one such competitor ready to do battle this weekend.
“I’m really looking forward to getting to Port Macquarie,” Constable said after finishing runner-up last year to Harley Ingelby (Emerald Beach, NSW).
“It’s going to be such a good event as all the top competitors from Australia will looking to take the prestigious Australian crown.”
“Australian’s are currently dominating international longboarding, so the competition will be of a world-class standard,” he added.
Having won a number of titles this year, including the prestigious Open’s division at the Noosa Festival of Surfing and currently placed 17th on the ASP World Longboard Tour (WLT) rankings, Constable is definitely looking for a strong campaign at the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival.
“I’ve had a leg injury that hasn’t been 100 per cent for some time now, so I’ve been taking it pretty easy competitively,” he said.
“But that being said I’m still disappointed with how I’ve been going of late.”
“I’m really looking for a good result to give me momentum into the back end of 2008, plus to win Australian title is always on my wish-list.”
Commencing on Sunday 17th August 2008, and running until Saturday 23rd August, the Oxbow Australian Longboard Titles will see competitors competing in the under 18 boys and girls, Open men and women, Over 35 men and women and Over 40, 45, 50, 55 and 60 years male divisions - With 11 prestigious national titles up for grabs.
Having received a wildcard into the event, three-time Australian Champion Chelsea Williams (Tweed Heads, NSW) will be looking to make the most of her late call-up.
Finishing second at the Roxy ASP Women’s World Longboard Titles earlier this year, Williams knows better than most the magnitude of this event.
“It’s the most important event in Australia for sure,” she said.
“I’m feeling pretty confident going into the event, but at this level anyone can win so I’m just concentrating on my surfing.”
“Port Macquarie has so many awesome breaks up and down the coastline, hopefully we can score some good waves.”
In what is a coup for the sport, the Country Energy Australian Surf Festival sees the Oxbow Australian Longboard Titles and the Na Papa Australian Surfmasters Titles combined for the first time in 44 years of Australian competitive surfing history.
Also to be held in conjunction with the competitive surfing will be live music, surf art and photography exhibitions and other cultural offerings.
“It’s definitely a good thing for surfing as a whole to bring the whole gamut of surfing into this event and create a festival atmosphere, I think it will be awesome”, continued Williams.
Following the Oxbow Australian Longboard Titles will be the Na Papa Surfmasters Titles, which will see the gathering of the best shortboard riders in the country.
Running from the from Sunday August 24 2008 until Saturday August 30, the Na Papa Australian Surfmasters titles will see competitors battling it out for 10 prestigious national titles.