- 23 October 2013 | Surfing
Iarom Madden and Holly Donnelly have taken out the 2013 British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) Surf Championships, in Newquay, Cornwall.
A strong left to right rip meant that half of the test for the guys and girls contesting was to get out the back through the swell to put themselves in position to catch a wave. However once there, the big sets coming through provided some really nice sections for big open face manoeuvres.
Four different universities were represented in the Men's final, which was an epic battle. Between the four surfers 23 waves were caught, impressive in any normal conditions but with the strong rip they were paddling through even more so.
Madden opened his account with a huge run, a long left hander with big spray off several huge back handers scoring 6.34, but that run left him way down the beach out of position and facing a long paddle back against the rip.
Then a long right hander with two big hacks of the top saw Iarom better his early wave and push himself way out in the lead.
Jack Ellis was the first name to be called out in fourth place finishing just behind Martin Portillo who collected his bronze medal. The crowd waited in anticipation for the next name and silver medallist to be confirmed.
In the end, Sam Coad's late wave was not enough to overhaul Iarom Madden's excellent display and the students from University College London roared with delight as he was called up in first place. The pair were separated by just 0.14 in their combined wave scores.
"I live in London now so I only get to surf every few months but I put in loads of training over the last few weeks, I did as much as I could out of the water and came down here a few days early and luckily the hard work has paid off", says Madden.
In the Women's final, Holly Donnelly caught a strong wave to begin the heat and a couple of good cut backs saw her score 8.0 while the other girls, caught in a big set of waves barrelling in, were still struggling to get out the back.
Donnelly waited patiently for the right wave to back up her early high score, eventually she got it cementing her lead and from then on everyone else was playing catch up.