Epic surf hits the 2009 South African Surfing Championships

May 30, 2009 | Surfing

Dave Richards

Testing conditions, solid overhead surf and crosshore winds made life difficult for competitors and officials alike on Day Two of the 2009 South Coast Tourism South African Surfing Championships at St Mikes but according to those in the know, the wind will switch overnight and the prediction is that the final two days of the tournament will deliver epic surf.

For some, Day Two was just too tough resulting in elimination from the event while others revelled in the condition and took the opportunity to show their skills in the 2 metre surf that wrapped around the St Mikes point.

Best surfer on the day was Dan Redman of KZN who posted a 9 point and a 9.25 ride ( maximum is 10 points per wave) in Round Two of the Men's division which gave him the highest heat score of the contest.

Redman and 2008 SA Championships finalist Ryan Payne of EP had both surprisingly slipped into the Repercharge Round on Day One but Redman came back with a bang and is through to Round Four as is Payne, who looked strong in the big surf.

Also through to Round Four are Redman's KZN teammates, Paul Canning, Michael Vawda and Wes O'Driscoll while Payne is joined by his brother and defending SA Champion Shaun and another EP surfer, Etienne Potgieter.

Dave Richards of WP also advanced to Round Four as did Stuart Fowles of Border, Shaun Botha of Boland and John Van Reenen of Southern KZN.

In the U20 Boys Division ISA Scholarship recipient Khayehihle Ngcobo of Southern KZN advanced from the Repercharge Round into Round Three as did Lotto Scholarship recipient Bertie Stuurman and fellow EP surfer Dominic Abersalie.

After a bad start to the championships on Day One Kyle Lane of KZN, the 2009 Quiksilver Pro Junior Champion, won his heat and is into Round Three as is JC Susan of WP and Jean du Plessis of Border.

The Women and Under 20 Girls Round One competitors got their first chance to surf in the championships on Friday and there were some surprises in the Women's division from the outset.

Both Heather Clark of Southern KZN, the defending champion and her runner up last year, Stacey Guy of WP, slipped into the Repercharge Round as did Tasha Mentasti of KZN and will have to finish either first or second in Round Two to advance.

Faye Zoetmulder and EP teammate Emma Smith both advanced to Round Three as did Laurie Mc Gregor of Border after they finished second in their respective first round heats while Nikita Robb of Border, Penny Stemmet of Boland and Tammy Lee Smith of KZN all won their heats to advance through to Round Four.

Sarah Baum of KZN, Tarryn Chudleigh of WP and Alice Mc Gregor of Border all won their heats in the U20 Girls division to go straight to Round Four while Laura Oppel of Southern KZN, Gina Smith of EP and 2007 Champion Chantelle Rautenbach of Boland are through to Round Three.

Southern KZN Surfing Association are hosting the South African Championships which is supported by South Coast Tourism, the first tourism organisation to sponsor the South African Surfing Championships in the 44 year history of the event.

The contest is presented by Surfing South Africa (SSA) who are recognised by the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA) as the governing body for the sport in South Africa.

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