2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Championships Marks Halfway Point of Competitive Year

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Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Col / Surf2Surf.com.
Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Col / Surf2Surf.com.

The 2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Surfing Championships being held at Christchurch this weekend is the third of five events on the New Zealand Surf Series marking the half way point of the competitive season.

The event has attracted top talent from the South Island as well as several surfers from the North Island who are keen to further their national rankings.

The event comes hot on the heels of the Corona South Island Championships and is two weeks before the Rip Curl Pro being held at Raglan on the 5-7 May.

Raglan’s Taylor Hutchison will use this weekend’s event as well as the next two weeks off national competition preparing for the ISA World Surfing Games being held in France from the 21st May.

Hutchison goes into this weekend’s event as the number one seed and will want to improve on his 2016 semifinal finish that he incurred thanks to the now retired Maz Quinn (Gis) who eventually went back-to-back with a win in 2016.

Piha’s Wallis brothers fill seeds two and three with the youngest of the two, Tane Wallis, finding some excellent form at the South Island Championships last weekend finishing third.

Christchurch surfer Harrison Whiteside will compete in the Open as well as the Under 20 Boys Division and will want to complete a top performance like that one that saw him surf to victory at the first stop of the Billabong Grom Series this year.  Locals will have high hopes for Whiteside in both the Open and Junior Division of which he goes in to as the number one seed.

Whiteside starts off with a tough juniors heat that includes Jack McLeod (Dun), winner of the most recent event held at Dunedin, and 17 year old Conor McLennan (Chch) who broke through for his first national win in the Under 17 Boys Division earlier in the year.  Hutchison meets Christchurch stand out Nick Tuhikarama along with up and coming youngster Neko Tohiariki (Chch).

McLennan goes into the Under 17 Boys Division as the number one seed with a raft of young talent looking to take him down including Dunedin’s Ruben Peyroux, Jack McLeod and James Millar.

Myka Black (Chch) will attempt to win his third straight event in the Under 14 Boys Division after wins in the Ray White Duke Festival of Surfing and the South Island Championships so far this year.

The participants in the junior divisions have already had a huge four months of competition which has seen them compete along the length of the country.  Just last weekend they were in attendance at the South Island Championships held in pumping waves in Dunedin and next week they will be back in action at Raglan for the Backdoor GromBash which bookends the school holidays.

In the senior divisions it is Johnny Wardrop (Kaik), Anthony Hema (Buller) and Neill Robb (Chch) that will look to hold down their top rankings in the Over 28s, 35s and 45s respectively.

Current rankings leader for the New Zealand Longboard Series, Zen Wallis (Piha) will face up against local talent such as Henry Hawke and Hugh Ritchie to stay at the top of the rankings for the years end.

The three-day event takes place from Saturday through until Monday (22nd – 24th April) along the Christchurch coastline and is sanctioned by both Surfing New Zealand and the South Island Surfing Association making for a valuable event for national rankings.

Participants across the eight divisions will be vying for $9,000 in cash and prizes.

The 2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Championships features senior divisions – Open Men, Over 28s, 35s, 45s and Longboard plus the Under 20, 17 and 14 Boys Divisions.

Action will take place from 8am each day and finals are scheduled for Mondayafternoon.

Please see below for the current New Zealand Surf Series and Grom Series rankings after the most recent event – the Corona South Island Championships held at Dunedin over Easter.

Open Men’s Division Top 10
1, Billy Stairmand (Rag)
2, Elliot Brown (Dun)
3, Taylor Hutchison (Rag)
4, Tane Wallis (Piha)
5, Elliot Paerata-Reid (Piha)
6, Zen Wallis (Piha)
7, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh)
8, Jonas Tawharu (Mnt)
8, Sean Peggs (Tairua)
10, Sam Sands (Chch)

Men’s Longboard Division
1, Zen Wallis (Piha)
2, Hugh Ritchie (Chch)
3, Thomas Kibblewhite (Auck)
4, Henry Hawke (Chch)
5, William Wallace (Dun)

Under 20 Boys Division
1, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh)
2, Taylor Hutchison (Rag)
3, Callum Chuter (Tau)
4, Jonas Tawharu (Mnt)
5, Harry Macintosh (Rag)

Under 17 Boys Division
1, Caleb Cutmore (Ham)
2, Elliott Brown (Dun)
3, Jared Gebert (Ohope)
4, Conor McLennan (Chch)
5, Tom Norton (Waipu)

Under 14 Boys Division
1, Kora Cooper (Rag)
2, Tom Robinson (Whngrei)
3, Myka Black (Chch)
4, Josef Jungwirth (Rag)
5, Tom Butland (Oakura)

Information
For more information on the Go Pro Canterbury Championships please contact Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.  Alternatively contact Russell Ritchie on 0274325972russell.ritchie@xtra.co.nz.

The 2Degrees Canterbury Men’s Surfing Championships would not be possible without the support of 2Degrees, Mike Pero Real Estate, Pier Lodge, host club North Wai Boardriders and the South Island Surfing Association.

Imagery
High resolution images will be available to media upon request. Images will be distributed free of charge.

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