Derek Footit: the vessel is also competing

Huge upset on Day 3 of the South African Bodyboarding Championships, as Darren Halse (SKZN) the 2010 South African Bodyboarding Association (SABA) Tour winner was knocked out in the qualifying rounds of the Pro division. The day was full of drama, with the second round of qualifiers being surfed for the Pro, Junior’s and Dropknee divisions.

Darren managed to win his heat today in the trying conditions but it was not enough when combined with his previous heat score to see him progress through to the next round. Another major upset was Central KwaZulu Natal’s Stuart Bradford who also failed to progress through to the top sixteen, this is the first time in 8 years of competing at SA Champs that Stuart has not made the cut. However, Stuart and Darren did manage to qualify for the top sixteen in the Dropknee division.

Conditions on Day 3 at Sun Coast Beach in the morning were awesome, with a good 3ft swell pushing through and light offshore winds that seemed to glass the ocean off. With the tide being high in the morning the Dropknee division was sent in and the riders didn’t disappoint. Rheinhardt du Toit (NKZN), Dylan van Tonder (EP), Sacha Specker (WP) and Wesley Fischer (CKZN) were standouts of the division.

Next the Pro division was up to show their supporters gathered on the beach what they could muster as the tide started dropping and the wind swung cross-shore. Mark McCarthy (NKZN), Wesley Fischer (CKZN), Sacha Specker (WP) and Derek Footit were all on fire as per usual.

These guys all managed to find waves with enough power to throw them into aerial manoeuvres and keep the crowds entertained. The wind swung onshore, but in some cases there were as many as five air-roll-spins (ARS’s) per heat in the deteriorating conditions.

As the “Beastly Easterly” blew harder and harder the Junior division was a closely contested affair. Michael Bowie (SKZN), Robbie Waites (CKZN), Niklas Martin (EP) and Storm Prestwich (SKZN) all managed to secure first places and maximum heat percentages in the trying conditions.

Here are the Pro Qualifying riders:

Dane Beales (CKZN)
Charles Pass (CKZN)
Iain Campbell (CKZN)
Michael Ostler (CKZN)
Wesley Fischer (CKZN)
Warren Canepa (EP)
Murray van Vuuren (EP)
Rheinhardt du Toit (NKZN)
Mark McCarthy (NKZN)
Derek Footit (SKZN)
Terence Pieters (SKZN)
David Lee (SKZN)
Dane Klusner (SKZN)
Jared Houston (WP)
Sacha Specker (WP)
Adam Morley (WP)

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