Ryan Carlson 

Out of all the waves ridden by all the surfers along all the coastlines of the Mainland USA this summer, only one could produce the single best move in the Billabong Freewave Challenge.

Today the winner of the Monster Maneuver Award was revealed to be Ryan Carlson of Huntington Beach, California for his extraordinary 540 Rodeo Flip.

Carlson earned $5,000 for pulling off the astonishing aerial trick (which consists of a backside flip combined with one-and-a-half body rotations) at Huntington on July 22, 2008.

The ride was captured on video by Paul Cerone/DSG and uploaded to the Freewave Challenge site where it became the most-viewed clip of the year. Cerone receives $1,200 for documenting the move.

Made Widiarta

Surfing made its first appearance on an Olympic sport calendar of events today, compliments of the Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) and the organizing Committee of the Bali Asian Beach Games in Indonesia.

It was fitting that the Open division started the program and the surfing standard didn’t disappoint. Fast and powerful, aerials and floaters entertained the large crowd.  The man-on-man final, in one metre waves, was an Indonesian affair with Made Raditya Rondi facing off against Made Widiarta.

After a slow start Widiarta eventually got to the lead and wasn’t headed. Third place was Shigenori Suzuki (Japan) with Carlito Nogalo (Philippines) in fourth.  Widiarta was mobbed by the crowd as he left the water, a popular win on his home beach.

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BUCS 2008

British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) Surfing Championships, sponsored by Ticket to Ride in association with the British Surfing Association (BSA) Inspiring surf conditions provided Britain’s student surfers with the ideal playground to showcase their skills and take-on their peers in a healthy exhibition of sporting rivalry.  It was Falmouth and Swansea who had the most reason to celebrate at the end with Falmouth’s Men’s team lifting the Championship trophy and Swansea’s Women’s team taking home the female equivalent.

Entries were phenomenally high this year, which meant the Contest Director was forced to cap entries to 100 woman and 200 men.  These figures make the BUCS event the largest British surfing competition with only male and female entrants - only the English Championships attracts a bigger entry, yet includes  a whole range of Grommets and Seniors categories - exemplifying just how enthusiastic the British student surfing scene is.

Friday saw perfect conditions roll-in for the competition with stunning sunshine accompanying shoulder to head height waves. Saturday’s smaller waves weren’t quite as challenging but they provided all the power necessary for the contestants to be able to impress the judges.  On Sunday, ‘textbook’ Fistral conditions with epic waves greeted a charged set of finals competitors and judges.

In the Woman’s event, both Amy Brock-Morgan of Plymouth B and Jaydean Kerton from Plymouth A won every single heat to make it to the finals.  There they met Hannah Dixon of Swansea A and Isabella Burke from Falmouth A for an impressive battle.  Following a tightly fought heat, Amy Brock-Morgan emerged victorious with Isabella Burke taking second place, Jaydean Kerton in third and Hannah Dixon in fourth.

In the Men’s final, Falmouth surfers dominated with both Josh Leatherbarrow and Fabian Baker making it to the final where they encountered Rob Webster-Blythe of Cardiff A and Jacob Downs of Plymouth A. At the end of the heat it was Falmouth who succeeded with Josh Leatherbarrow taking first with Fabian Baker coming second and Jacob Downs and Rob Webster-Blythe taking third and fourth respectively.

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