Kehu Butler: the future of surfing in New Zealand

Kehu Butler and Kea Smith have claimed the New Zealand National Primary School Championships, n 1.0m waves at Fitzroy Beach, New Plymouth.

Junior surfing is dominated by Mount Maunganui surfers. Butler and Smith dominated the contest to reconquer the Boys and Girls divisions.

It may be an ominous sign for the region as the strong Bay of Plenty Scholastic Surfing Team kick off their campaign at the National Scholastic Championships.

Butler had looked sharp all event and in the semifinals, posted the highest heat score of the event - 15.50 out of 20 points.

In the final he was equally as dominating posting a 13.67 point heat total leaving his opponents with massive scores required to catch up. It was midway through the final when Butler latched onto a clean lefthander and he belted two big backhand turns to score a 7.67 point ride. He then backed that up with a 6.0 point ride for the win.

In the Girls Division, Kea Smith looked to be in spectacular form all event. In the final she posted 9.43 out of a possible 20 points fronting up to the full tide conditions and limited wave offerings against her three opponents also from Mount Maunganui.

Smith surfed on her backhand on the lefthanders and completed several controlled turns on her waves to edge out her mates and will be a surfer to watch as she progresses through the age group divisions in the coming years.

Boys Final
Kehu Butler (Mnt), 13.67, 1, Daniel Farr (Tara), 9.53, 2, Tane Bowden (WGM), 9.33, 3, Sonny Rapira - Martin (Tara), 5.70, 4

Girls Final
Kea Smith (Mnt), 9.43, 1, Maaia - Reid Bennett (Mnt), 6.47, 2, Tiana - Breeze de Mooj (Mnt), 5.83, 3, Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 4.1, 4

Boys Round Robin Points
1, Kehu Butler (Mnt), 30,
2, Daniel Farr (Tara), 30
3, Tane Bowden (WGM), 30
4, Reuben Mottart (Gis), 27
5, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 27

Girls Round Robin Points
1, Kea Smith (Mnt), 30
2, Maaia Reid - Bennett (Mnt), 30
3, Tiana-Breeze de Mooj (Mnt), 27
4, Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 27
5, Zhana Hutchieson (Tara), 24

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