Robert Gray wins 2008 Wimpy Rossi Pro-Am

May 5, 2008 | Bodyboarding
2008 Wimpy Rossi Pro-Am: Robert Gray won the event

The 9th annual Wimpy Rossi Pro-Am ended off on a huge note on Sunday 4th May on Margate's Main Beach. Those contestants who made it through to the final day were greeted with clean 3 to 4ft conditions and very contestable waves.

The wind swung onshore for a bit and for a moment it looked like the conditions were going to become difficult, but Mother Nature played along and conditions stayed perfect for the remainder of the contest.

The Boys division was hotly contested by Storm Prestwich (SN), Murray van Vuuren (EP), Andre Blignaut and Sebastian Koopman (WP). In the end Storm and Murray went head to head and Storm narrowly came out the victor. Sebastian ended 3rd with Andre in 4th.

It was great to have a full Masters final for this event as previous years there were very few who could make the trip. Mike van Huysteen (CN), Karl Liebenberg (CN), Martin Otto and Kevin Williams (SN) battled it out in the clean surf for 20 minutes and in the end Karl took top spot with Kevin in 2nd, Mike in 3rd and Martin placing 4th.

The Mens division has grown considerably in the past 2 years in the SABA circuit and competition was very tough for this event with 15 entrants in total. Making it through to the finals were Wayne Beekman (SN), Shaun Hague (SN), Darren Campbell and Robert Gray (CN).

Wayne has won this event several times and was definitely in contention to do so again, but was denied this opportunity as this time around Robert Gray came out on top with Wayne 2nd, Darren 3rd and Shaun in 4th.

Many spectators were looking forward to the Ladies final as 2 times World Women Champion Karla Costa-Taylor (SN) came up against her mother Maria Costa (Brazil). Joining them for this 5 women final were Liezl van Vollenhoven (SN), Jocelyn Norton (CN) and Samantha Smith (SN).

Maria started off immediately at the start of the heat by picking up set waves and looked very determined. Karla seemed abit unsettled at first after not being in the water for numerous months, but soon instinct kicked in and she got the connecting waves to execute her trademark smooth spins and rolls to take the win ahead of mom Maria. Jocelyn earned a well deserved 3rd place ahead of Liezl followed by Samantha.

The Factory 7 Dropknee Division is another division that is very well contested as Factory 7 put up cash to the value of R2400.00 to the finalists. It was a regular de ja vu sight to see current SA DK Champ Sacha Specker (WP) and former SA Dk Champ Derek Footit (SN) face off in yet another dk final. Joining them were Iain Campbell (CN) and Sean Tickner (CN).

From the word go the action was non stop. Sacha picked up some decent set waves and executed big floaters with Derek following suit, but attention was soon focussed on Sean Tickner with the amount of spray he was throwing all over the place with ease. Sean proved that he's a formidable force in the dk division and took top spot followed by Sacha, Iain and then Derek.

The Junior final saw an on form Iain Campbell (CN) take on local boy Terence Pieters (SN), Chris Elliot (WP) and Warren van der Merwe (NKZN). Needless to say it was nothing short of spectacular to watch. All 4 finalists went for broke, but it was Iain who picked up the better looking sets which in the end secured him the win. Chris was right behind him followed by Terence and then Warren.

Since the introduction of entrants being allowed to ride 2 or 3 divisions, the Juniors could finally prove their true potential by taking on their idols in the Pro division. This was exactly the case in this years' Pro Final as Chris Elliot who was in action in the Junior final also, came up against Alistair Taylor (SN) who squared up against Sacha Specker (WP) and Jared Houston (WP).

The showdown was a ARS frenzy as Sacha and Alistair went mad in as both were hungry for the 1st place and a big share of the R12000.00 prize money put up by Wimpy Margate. Jared and Chris tried their best to play catch up to Alistair and Sacha, but it was in vein. Sacha was in a league of his own and took the win with Alistair in 2nd, Jared in 3rd and Chris in 4th.

The R500.00 maneuver of the contest prize sponsored by Surf M'Ocean went to Sacha Specker in the end in the final heat of the day. Up until then it was Justin Zietsman or Dane Klusener who looked to be in it for the running.

Factory 7 also put up R500.00 for the contestant who did the craziest maneuver during a skimming contest. Dune Barker, Dane Klusener and Terence Pieters who are all local boys went absolutely mental and in the end Terence took the win. Terence refused to take all the credit and ended up sharing his prize with Dane.

Best judge went to Jason Boddy.

Source: South African Bodyboarding Association

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