Final Day Highlights – Outerknown Fiji Pro 2017

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It required nearly every day of the two-week waiting period to finish, but the Outerknown Fiji Pro saved the best for last. In the end, Matt Wilkinson found redemption after losing in the Final last year, topping rookie upstart Connor O’Leary to take the crown in a tightly contested heat.

MATT WILKINSON CLAIMS VICTORY AT OUTERKNOWN FIJI PRO

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Matt Wilkinson of Australia advances directly to the quarterfinals of the Outerknown Fiji Pro after winning Heat 1 of Round Four at Cloudbreak.

TAVARUA/NAMOTU, Fiji (Thursday, June 15, 2017) Matt Wilkinson (AUS) has won theOuterknown Fiji Pro, Stop No. 5 on the 2017 World Surf League (WSL) Championship Tour (CT), after an action-packed Finals Day that saw the world’s best surfers battle in pumping waves at Cloudbreak.

Wilkinson’s win comes after a hard-fought Final against 2017 CT Rookie Connor O’Leary (AUS), and triumphs over 2017 World Title contenders Michel Bourez (PYF) and Julian Wilson (AUS).

The Australian came into Fiji determined to take the win after earning a runner-up finish to 2014 WSL Champion Gabriel Medina (BRA) at this event last year. Wilkinson’s incredible 2016 season saw him win the opening two events and finish the year in fifth place. Today’s win not only marks Wilkinson’s third CT victory, but sees him lead the elite World Title race heading into the next event.

“We’ve had an awesome week that started with pumping waves and then had some lay days,” said Wilkinson. “If you were going to have lay days anywhere, this is the place to do it. Happiness translates to results.”

Wilkinson will now sport the coveted yellow Jeep Leader Jersey with 26,750 points on the leaderboard. His win advances him past former frontrunner and reigning WSL Champion John John Florence (HAW), as well as Jordy Smith (ZAF), Adriano de Souza (BRA) and Owen Wright (AUS).

“I am so stoked,” continued Wilkinson. “It definitely feels good to pick up momentum rather than to have the yellow Jeep Jersey to lose. Now I have it to keep. Thanks to everyone – all my support crew and everyone that has helped me.”


Caption: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) looked unstoppable throughout the event, charging his way to victory with a series of impressive performances.
Credit: © WSL / Cestari

An exciting Final saw both surfers post excellent-range scores in the opening ten minutes. The rookie took a slight edge thanks to his 6.50 back-up score and went on to build his advantage with a 7.37. Wilkinson battled through the rest of the 40 minute bout to turn the heat and with two minutes remaining his persistence paid off and an 8.03 was enough to earn him victory.

Today’s result sees O’Leary move up from 15th to 7th on the Jeep Leaderboard and secure his place firmly inside the Top 10. The impressive performance from the young Australian sees him leading the 2017 WSL Rookie of the Year race and become the only rookie to make a final this year. O’Leary won through every heat en route to the Final and defeated 2012 WSL Champion Joel Parkinson (AUS), fellow rookie Joan Duru (FRA) and 11X WSL Champion Kelly Slater (USA) before meeting Wilkinson in the Final.

“It was such a good final back-and-forth and I’m really glad we put on such a good show for everyone,” said O’Leary. “Wilkinson’s a legend. He got second here last year so he really deserves the win – he’s been ripping. I’m going to do some training and then head to Ballito and J-Bay.”


Caption: The in-form rookie Connor O’Leary (AUS) jumps up to 7th place on the Jeep Leaderboard after a runner-up finish today.
Credit: © WSL / Cestari

Bourez battled eventual winner Wilkinson in Semifinal 1. The pair were neck-and-neck through much of the heat but a last-ditch effort from the Australian saw him earn a 5.90 and edge the win over Bourez. The result is the best of the season for the Tahitian who was a standout all event, posting consistently high scores and winning each heat on his way to the Semifinals.

“It’s a weird feeling because he got that wave with like 20 seconds to go,” Bourez said. “He (Wilkinson) just got it at the end so good on him. I’m just super happy to be here – it’s pumping, there are barrels and it’s a beautiful day. I wish I made the Final but at the end of the day I had fun.”

En route to his runner-up finish, O’Leary took down Parkinson, CT veteran and 2012 WSL Champion, in the second Semifinal. Parkinson gained the lead on his opening exchange with a 6.83, but the rookie dominated with an excellent 8.00 and 7.40 for the win. Parkinson’s 3rd place finish marks his best result of the season and puts him in 6th place on the Jeep Rankings.

“I’m a little disappointed but stoked with a Semifinal,” said Parkinson. “I’ve had pretty scrappy heats today so I really wanted to go out there and do the surfing I know I can do. Going into the dream leg of the tour I’m happy with a Semifinal finish. J-Bay is definitely one of my favorite events coming up.”

The Outerknown Fiji Pro was an incredible event for the 2017 rookie class with Leonardo Fiovaranti (ITA), Duru and Ian Gouveia (BRA) all making it through to Finals Day and delivering their best results of the season. The three rookies Fioravanti, Gouveia and Duru, each caused a stir in Round 3 where they eliminated top seeds Florence, Wright and Smith respectively. Fioravanti was eventually eliminated by Bourez in the Quarterfinals after sending home Gouveia in Round 5 while Duru couldn’t overcome runner-up O’Leary.

The next stop on the 2017 Men’s WSL CT will be the Corona Open J-Bay from July 12 – 23, 2017. The women will next compete at the Vans US Open of Surfing, which opens July 31and runs through August 6, 2017.

The events will be broadcast LIVE via WorldSurfLeague.com, the WSL app and on Facebook LIVE via the WSL’s Facebook page. Also check the local listings for coverage on CBS Sports Network in the U.S., Fox Sports in Australia, ESPN in Brazil, Sky NZ in New Zealand, SFR Sports in France and Portugal and as part of the EDGEsport Network.

For more information, check out WorldSurfLeague.com.

Outerknown Fiji Men’s Pro Final Results:
1 – Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 16.60
2 – Connor O’Leary (AUS) 15.70

Outerknown Fiji Men’s Pro Semifinal Results:
SF 1: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 14.23 def. Michel Bourez (PYF) 14.00
SF 2: Connor O’Leary (AUS) 15.40 def. Joel Parkinson (AUS) 8.36

Outerknown Fiji Men’s Pro Quarterfinal Results:
QF 1: Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 17.00 def. Julian Wilson (AUS) 16.30
QF 2: Michel Bourez (PYF) 17.80 def. Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) 13.57
QF 3: Connor O’Leary (AUS) 11.16 def. Joan Duru (FRA)
QF 4: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 13.67 def. Bede Durbidge (AUS) 11.23

Outerknown Fiji Men’s Pro Round 5 Results:
Heat 1: Julian Wilson (AUS) 13.34 def. Italo Ferreira (BRA) 7.34
Heat 2: Leonardo Fioravanti (ITA) 14.83 def. Ian Gouveia (BRA) 11.33
Heat 3: Joan Duru (FRA) 17.33 def. Sebastian Zietz (HAW) 12.50
Heat 4: Joel Parkinson (AUS) 12.57 def. Stuart Kennedy (AUS) 12.36

2017 WSL Men’s Jeep Leaderboard (After Outerknown Fiji Men’s Pro):
1 – Matt Wilkinson (AUS) 26,750 points
2 – John John Florence (HAW) 26,500 points
3 – Jordy Smith (ZAF) 26,150 points
3 – Adriano de Souza (BRA) 26,150 points
3 – Owen Wright (AUS) 26,150 points

Medals on the Mind of Powerful New Zealand SUP and Paddleboard Team

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Penelope Strickland leading the pack in Fiji. She will be out to defend her world title this September. Image courtesy of ISA / Reed.
Penelope Strickland leading the pack in Fiji. She will be out to defend her world title this September. Image courtesy of ISA / Reed.

Podium finishes and medals are on the minds of twelve athletes named in the New Zealand Team that will compete at the International Surfing Association (ISA) World Stand Up Paddle and Paddleboard Champions this September.

Penelope Strickland leading the pack in Fiji. She will be out to defend her world title this September. Image courtesy of ISA / Reed.
Penelope Strickland leading the pack in Fiji. She will be out to defend her world title this September. Image courtesy of ISA / Reed.

The New Zealand Team has continued its rise up the world rankings with a fourth place finish in 2015 followed by a bronze medal in 2016 when the event was held in the tropical waters of neighbouring Fiji.

2017 event hosts, Denmark, could not be any further removed from Fiji but this years team will be searching for the same outstanding performances spurred on by defending champions, medallists and potent new recruits to the team.

New Zealand will defend titles in the Women’s SUP Technical Race through Penelope Strickland (Auck) and Men’s Prone Distance Race through Sam Shergold (Mnt).  Both athletes return this year with Strickland also competing in the Women’s SUP Distance Race.

Strickland is joined by Queenstown paddler Annabel Anderson who has held the SUP Racer number one ranking for several years and will be a major force in technical, distance and sprint races.

Three Australian based athletes join the team in Trevor Tunnington, Cory Taylor and Jasmine Smith.  Tunnington will have a big workload as he competes across the SUP Technical and Sprint Races as well as the SUP Surfing Discipline.

Tunnington, who returned to New Zealand in January to win the National Championships, will be joined by Sean Hovell (Gis) in the surfing discipline.

Hovell is one of three Gisborne athletes in the team with sisters Jasmine Smith (Prone Technical) and Stella Smith (SUP Surfing) also in the team.

At 15 years of age, Stella Smith is the youngest member of the New Zealand Team.  She won the National Championships in January and has shown form that will see her rival the best in the world come September.  She is joined by Kaikoura’s Lucy Te Moananui in the surfing discipline.

Stella’s oldest sister Jasmine competed at the event in 2015 where she placed fourth and received the copper medal.  This year she returns to the team with two years extra experience competing against the best in Australia as well as coming off the back of her first Molokai to Oahu race being held in Hawaii during July – a race considered the pinnacle of long distance paddling.

Another athlete returning to the team is 17-year-old Ollie Houghton.  Houghton last competed at the event in 2015 but had to forgo his place in the 2016 team due to school commitments.  This year he returns to race in the SUP Technical Race.

Houghton is joined by Marcus Hansen (Whangarei) who finished inside the top ten in both the distance and technical races that he will again contest this year.

Australian based 2015 double medallist Cory Taylor returns to the fold in 2017 to contest the Prone Technical Race.  Taylor is a regular participant in the famous Australian Ironman Series.

Rounding out the team is Jessica Miller who will contest the Paddleboard Distance Race.  Miller has big shoes to fill following the two silver medals achieved by Danielle McKenzie (Auck) at the 2016 event.

Australia go into the event as the defending champions while France finished second in 2016 with the highly touted Hawaiian’s in fourth.

The 2017 Denmark event is expected to attract over 30 nations with its close proximity to other European nations.

The schedule for the event is as follows:

September 1: Opening Ceremony, Parade of Nations and Sands of the World
September 2: Men’s and Women’s SUP and Prone Distance Races
September 3: Men’s and Women’s SUP Sprint Races plus medal ceremonies (Distance and Sprint)
September 5 – 10: SUP Surf, SUP and Prone Technical Races, Team Relays, Closing Ceremony

Please see below for the full team that will compete at the 2017 ISA World Stand Up Paddle and Paddleboard Championship being held in Denmark from 1-10 September 2017.

Trevor Tunnington (AUS based) – SUP Surf, Endurance and Sprint Races
Sean Hovell (Gis) – SUP Surf
Stella Smith (Gis) – SUP Surf
Lucy Te Moananui (Kaikoura) – SUP Surf Women’s
Marcus Hansen (Whangarei) – SUP Distance and Technical Races
Oliver Houghton (Auck) – SUP Technical Race
Penelope Strickland (Auckland) – SUP Distance and Technical Races
Annabel Anderson (Qtown) – SUP Endurance, Technical and Sprint Races
Sam Shergold (Mount Maunganui) – Paddleboard Distance Race
Cory Taylor (Gold Coast) – Paddleboard Technical Race
Jessica Miller (AUS based) – Paddleboard Distance Race
Jasmine Smith (Gis) – Paddleboard Technical Race

Manager – Rosie Houghton (Auckland)
Assistant Manager – Gavin Houghton (Auckland)
Paddleboard Coach – Scott Cowdrey (Mount Maunganui)

Further Information
For further information on the New Zealand Stand Up Paddle and Paddleboard Team please contact Surfing New Zealand’s Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.

Imagery
High resolution action images of the team will be available to media free of charge upon request.

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Ends

Hutchison Bows Out of World Surfing Games, Kiwis Finish 14th

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Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of the ISA
Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of the ISA

The New Zealand Team have finished fourteenth at the International Surfing Association (ISA) World Surfing Games completed at Biarritz, France overnight after our final athlete was eliminated from the event and the team were eliminated from the Aloha Cup in the semifinals.

Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of the ISA
Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of the ISA

Hosts France went on to win the overall event by an unprecedented points margin and also won the Aloha Cup.  Mexican Jhony Corzo won the Open Men’s Division held in small 1.0m waves.

Taylor Hutchison (Rag) went into the final two days of the event building momentum.  He advanced out of the third round and into some tough competition including hometown hero and World Tour surfer Joan Duru.

Hutchison fell short in his fourth round matchup unable to find the quality waves he needed to produce big scores.

“Joan Duru would be the best surfer I’ve surfed against to date and I was really excited to surf against him.”

“In that final heat, I knew I had a couple of tough competitors but it didn’t really phase me as I knew if I got the good ones I could make it through” said a philosophical Hutchison.

“In the end I just couldn’t find any good ones at all and hunted up and down the bank with no success and that sometimes happens” added Hutchison.

It was a big improvement on his early exit from the event in 2016 and the young 20-year-old surfer will build toward more international competition.

“Overall I made it further through the contest than I thought I would which gives me confidence in the future so I’m happy with my overall result. I felt I definitely had better surfing to offer if I was to catch the right waves but that’s part of competing” commented Hutchison of his performance.

On the final day of the event New Zealand contested the Aloha Cup which is a tag team event held amongst the top eight nations.  New Zealand was eliminated in the semifinals placing fourth in their heat behind France, Peru and Costa Rica.

The World Surfing Games were held at Biarritz in the south of France from the 20th – 28th May.  A record 47 nations participated at the event as the sport prepares for Tokyo 2020 and the Olympics for the first time.

Please see below for full and final results from day eight of the 2017 ISA World Surfing Games held at Biarritz, France overnight (Sunday 28th May).

Open Men’s Division Round 3
Heat 14

Imanol Yeregui, ESP, 10.60, 1, Taylor Hutchison, NZL, 10.00, 2, Leonardo Calvo, CRC, 8.80, 3, Thierno Sambe, SEN, 3.53, 4

Open Men’s Division Round 4
Heat 7

Joan Duru, FRA, 13.93, 1, Jordy Collins, USA, 11.24, 2, Jonas Bachan, AUT, 9.26, 3, Taylor Hutchison, NZL, 5.83, 4

Aloha Cup Semifinals
Heat 1

France, 37.3, 1, Peru, 34.7, 2, Costa Rica, 32.6, 3, New Zealand, 25.42, 4
Heat 2
Portugal, 49.77, 1, USA, 36.05, 2, Argentina, 35.33, 3, Japan, 31.98, 4

Aloha Cup Final
France, 54.96, 1, Portugal, 47.53, 2, Peru, 35.38, 3, USA, 33.07, 4

Open Men’s Division Final Placings
Jhony Corzo, MEX, 14.5, 1
Joan Duru, FRA, 13.9, 2
Pedro Henrique, POR, 12.47, 3
Jonathan González, ESP, 11.74, 4
Taylor Hutchison, NZL, 25th
Paul Moretti, NZL, 65th
Zen Wallis, NZL, 97th
JC Susan, NZL, 97th

Open Women’s Division Final Placings
Pauline Ado, FRA, 12.17, 1
Johanne Defay, FRA, 10.43, 2
Leilani McGonagle, CRC, 8.4, 3
Bianca Buitendag, RSA, 7.47, 4
Ella Williams, NZL, 7th
Raiha Ensor, NZL, 9th

Overall Team Points
1. France, 4275
2. Portugal, 2850
3. Spain, 2560
4. Mexico, 2455
5. Japan, 2395
6. Peru, 2193
7. USA, 2158
8. Brazil, 2120
9. Costa Rica, 2113
10. South Africa, 1965
11. Tahiti, 1960
12. Australia, 1880
13. England, 1833
14. New Zealand, 1781
15. Morocco, 1731

Threepeat for Hutchison as Vette Steps Up Big in Under 20s

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Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Matt / NZ Surf Photography.
Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Matt / NZ Surf Photography.

Raglan surfer Taylor Hutchison made it three in a row at the Backdoor GromBash completed at Raglan today (Sunday 30th April) winning the Premier Under 20 Boys Division.

Joining Hutchison was Saffi Vette (Gis) who won the Under 20 Girls Division moving up from the Under 17 Girls Division with her biggest win of her career.

The two surfers along with their opponents had to endure some strong cross onshore winds and wobbly 1.0m – 1.4m waves that only the points of Manu Bay could line up to resemble a clean line up.

Hutchison’s win sees him reclaim the number one ranking from Harrison Whiteside after his fourth straight win in the division.

Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Matt / NZ Surf Photography.
Taylor Hutchison. Image courtesy of Matt / NZ Surf Photography.

Hutchison was simply too strong for his three competitors in the 25 minute final. Double finalist Jared Gebert (Ohope) was his closest rival posting a 12.33 piint heat total compared to Hutchison’s 14.40. Callum Chuter (Mnt) placed third in the final ahead of Jay Piper – Healion (Whitianga) who surfed in his first national level final.

Australian Axel Rose – Curotta claimed the Under 17 Boys Division but could not repeat his winning performance in the Under 14 Boys Division finishing runner up to Kora Cooper (Rag).

In the final of the Under 17 Boys Division, Rose – Curotta used his polished backhand to post a 13.83 point heat total. It is the third year the youngster has crossed the Tasman Sea to compete at the event and the first time he has finalled. He defeated his Kiwi opponents who were led by Dylan Preston (Mnt) in second, Jared Gebert in third and Caleb Cutmore (Ham) in fourth.

In the Under 14 Boys Division it was one near-perfect wave surfed by Kora Cooper (Rag) that completely flipped the final. Cooper went from fourth to first thanks to a 9.17 point ride. Finishing with a 13.3 point heat total, Cooper claimed his fourth win from six events contested this year and takes back the overall rankings lead with one event to go.

Curotta added a runner-up finish to his weekend’s performance ahead of Jayden Willoughby (Rag) in third and Josef Jungwirth (Rag) in fourth.

Saffi Vette (Gis) snatched victory in the Under 20 Girls Division surfing to a 5.9 on her last wave with 10 seconds to go in the final. Her win came at the demise of Mount Maunganui’s Raiha Ensor who led for much of the 25 minutes.

Vette finished with a 14.8 point heat total pipping Ensor’s 13.07 with Claudia Fraser (Piha) in third.

Despite missing the Under 20 Girls Division final due to pending international flights, Elin Tawharu made up for that earlier in the day with a win in the Under 17 Girls Division.

Tawharu posted an 11.7 point heat total for the win. It was her fourth straight win in the division giving her an unassailable rankings lead with one event remaining.

Finishing second was Brie Bennett (Rag) with Tiana – Breeze de Mooij (Mnt) in third and Zhana Hutchison (Tara) in fourth.

Bennett went on to win the Under 14 Girls Division and take the overall rankings for the year with the Backdoor GromBash being the final event.

Bennett was sitting in second place behind Ariana Shewry (Oakura) for much of the final until Shewry dropped in on the same wave as Bennett and incurred an interference putting her back to second.

Finishing third in the Under 14 Girls final was Natasha Gouldsbury (Levin) with first-time finalist Liv Haysom (Piha) finishing in fourth.

Please see below for final results from the Backdoor GromBash completed at Manu Bay, Raglan today, Sunday 30th April.

Under 20 Boys Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Jared Gebert (Ohope), 13.07, 1, Jay Piper – Healion (Whiti), 13.03, 2, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 12.4, 3, Tom Butland (OaKura), 11.03, 4
Heat 2
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 14.77, 1, Callum Chuter (Tau), 10.67, 2, Caleb Cutmore (Ham), 10.57, 3, William Van Der Beek (Mnt), 8.6, 4

Under 20 Boys Division Final
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 14.40, 1, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 12.33, 2, Callum Chuter (Tau), 9.50, 3, Jay Piper – Healion (Whiti), 8.0, 4

Under 17 Boys Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Axel Rose – Curotta (AUS), 15.3, 1, Caleb Cutmore (Ham), 14.3, 2, Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 11.8, 3, Shane Kraus (Piha), 9.6, 4
Heat 2
Dylan Preston (Mnt), 11.2, 1, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 9.73, 2, Kora Cooper (Rag), 7.1, 3, William Van der Beek (Mnt), 7, 4

Under 17 Boys Division Final
Axel Rose – Curotta (AUS), 13.73, 1, Dylan Preston (Mnt), 12.36, 2, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 10.83, Caleb Cutmore (Ham), 10.8, 4

Under 14 Boys Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Axel Rose – Curotta (AUS), 12.5, 1, Josef Jungwirth (Rag), 11.6, 2, Tom Butland (Tara), 10.8, 3, Saxon Reber (AUS), 10.8, 4
Heat 2
Kora Cooper (Rag), 13.3, 1, Jayden Willoughby (Rag), 11.4, 2, Navryn Malone (Rag), 9.2, 3, Jack Hinton (Mnt), 7.97, 4

Under 14 Boys Division Final
Kora Cooper (Rag), 14.63, 1, Axel Rose – Curotta (AUS), 14.33, 2, Jayden Willoughby (Rag), 14.17, 3, Josef Jungwirth (Rag), 13.83, 4

Under 20 Girls Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 13.8, 1, Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 11.2, 2, Ariana Shewry (Tara), 8.77, 3, Tiana – Breeze de Mooj (Mnt), 8.03, 4
Heat 2
Saffi Vette (Gis), 12.3, 1, Claudia Fraser (Auck), 12.2, 2, Tegen Bishop (Chch), 9.27, 3, Zhana Hutchison (Tara), 8.73, 4

Under 20 Girls Division Final
Saffi Vette (Gis), 14.80, 1, Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 13.07, 2, Claudia Fraser (Auck), 9.60, 3, Elin Tawharu (Mnt), n/s

Under 17 Girls Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 11.8, 1, Brie Bennett (Rag), 8.6, 2, Aimee Brown (Auck), 5.93, 3, Tegen Bishop (Chch), 5.4, 4
Heat 2
Zhana Hutchison (Tara), 9.77, 1, Tiana – Breeze de Mooj (Mnt), 6.57, 2, Gabrielle Paul (Auck), 6.53, 3, Saffi Vette (Gis), 5.1, 4

Under 17 Girls Division Final
Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 11.7, 1, Brie Bennett (Rag), 9.13, 2, Tiana – Breeze de Mooj (Mnt), 8.43, 3, Zhana Hutchison (Tara), 8.43

Under 14 Girls Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Brie Bennett (Rag), 12.3, 1, Natasha Gouldsbury (Levin), 11.5, 2, Anna Brock (Mnt), 7.83, 3, Daizee Rawls (Gis), 5.97, 4
Heat 2
Ariana Shewry (Tara), 15.6, 1, Liv Haysom (Piha), 10.1, 2, Alice Westerkamp (Auck), 8.27, 3, Hannah King (Gis), 6.83, 4

Under 14 Girls Division Final
Brie Bennett (Rag), 12.27, 1, Ariana Shewry (Tara), 7.77, 2, Natasha Gouldsbury (Levin), 7.57, 3, Liv Haysom (Piha), 3.93, 4

Information
For more information on the Backdoor GromBash please contact Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz. Alternatively contact Backdoor via Geoff Hutchison – hutch@backdoor.co.nz.

Imagery
Web clips will be distributed free of charge from the event. Please contact Ben Kennings for further details.

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

Partners
Generous support from Backdoor Surf Shop, Channel Islands Surfboards, Billabong, Kustom and DaKine has made this event possible.

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The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506. This will be updated daily at with venues, divisions contested and conditions.

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Ends

Upcoming Events
5-7 May – Rip Curl Pro, Raglan
20-28 May – ISA World Surfing Games, France
1-10 September – ISA SUP and Prone World Championships, Denmark
23 September – 1 October – ISA World Junior Championships, Japan
7-8 October – Primary School Champs, Gisborne
9-13 October – Scholastic Championships, Gisborne
21-22 October – Aotearoa Maori Titles, Taranaki

Stairmand Snaps Quinn’s Run But Williams Gets Her Third

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Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.

Hometown hero Billy Stairmand snapped Maz Quinn’s winning streak at the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths completed at Manu Bay Raglan today (Saturday 6th May) winning the Open Men’s Division in convincing fashion.

While Stairmand was the disrupter for the men, in the Open Women’s Division, it was Ella Williams (WGM) that went three in a row with her victory in the final.

The last day of the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths was played out in clean 1.0m – 1.5m waves.  The wind changed from a light morning offshores to a light afternoon sea breeze that kept conditions pristine.

Stairmand’s win comes on the back of his sixth and record breaking national championship he won in January keeping a 2016 undefeated run in New Zealand.

Today he posted a 16.73 point heat total in the final leaving his opponents requiring near excellent scores to catch him.

“I was feeling super comfortable here, obviously it is my hometown, I have been surfing so much here recently and training, my board was feeling good all day and so was my surfing” said Stairmand post final.

“All the guys have been ripping this weekend though.  It was a gnarly final so I am stoked to get the win” he added knowing full well what the $3000 prize money can do for his international campaign.

“I am off to Japan in two weeks so this win is timely to help with funding that travel and it will help me to the next event in South Africa which I can book my flights for now too.”

In the final today it was Gisborne’s Bobby Hansen that got the closest to Stairmand posting a 15.33 point heat total in the final and going close to the required score on the last wave he rode in the dying seconds.

Two time defending champion Maz Quinn (Gis) had to settle for third place today.  Despite flashes of brilliance, Quinn could not match the wave selection of Stairmand and Hansen that would allow him to let loose.

Local surfer Taylor Hutchison finished fourth in the final with an excellent performance all weekend that will build confidence as he heads to France for the World Surfing Games in one week’s time.

Billy Stairmand.  Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Ella Williams.  Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Ella Williams. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.

Ella Williams claimed an Open Women’s Division final that was full of opportunity for all four surfers.  However it was the 22-year-old’s determination coupled with her international experience that separated her from her three opponents.

“This is the best result I could have hoped for today, I am so stoked” said Williams.  “It was fun all day, nice and glassy, a little onshore this afternoon but the faces were so clean” she added of the conditions.

Notably, unlike the Open Men’s Division which was full of natural footers, the women’s final was an all goofy foot affair.

“It is so exciting to surf against the girls, we were all evenly matched and I was lucky to get the best waves” said Williams.

Williams, who has one more week in New Zealand before heading overseas to compete in France and Mexico, posted a 13.43 point total in the final eclipsing four time event champion Jessica Santorik (Rag) who scored 12.13.

Santorik only just nudged Auckland’s Gabriella Sansom in to third place with the youngest of the finalists, 19 year old Indica Ratima (Rag) finishing in fourth place.

The Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbriaths is the fourth of five events on the New Zealand Surf Series with the final event being the Backdoor BayBash scheduled for Hawkes Bay during November.

A full replay of the coverage from Sky Sport will be shown on channel 53 on Sunday from 12pm – 4pm.

Please see below for final results from the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths completed at Manu Bay, Raglan today (Saturday 6th May).

Open Men’s Division Round of 32
Heat 1

Dylan Preston (WGM), 11.13, 1, Bachelor Tipene (Tara), 10.43, 2, Nat Hughes (Rag), 9.57, 3, Thomas Carter (Waihi Bch), .9.03, 4
Heat 2
Maz Quinn (Gis), 13.17, 1, Luke Cederman (Auck), 12.5, 2, Nick White (Mnt), 11.9, 3, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 10.33, 4
Heat 3
Matt Hewitt (Mnt), 13.9, 1, Joe Gethen (Ham), 13.1, 2, Ben Poulter (Waihi Bch), 11.03, 3, Conor McLennan (Chch), 8.9, 4
Heat 4
Bobby Hansen (Gis), 14.77, 1, Coby Perkovich (Aus), 13.37, 2, Chris Malone (Rag), 12.4, 3, Ben Kennings (WGM), 6.47, 4
Heat 5
Billy Stairmand (Rag), 15.93, 1, Callum Chuter (Mnt), 11.31, 2, Larry Fisher (Rag), 10.77, 3, Deane Hishon (Rag), 8.3, 4
Heat 6
Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha), 16.8, 1, Daniel Kereopa (Rag), 14.17, 2, Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 10.57, 3, Jay Piper – Healion (Whiti), 7.6, 4
Heat 7
Sid West (GB), 12.9, 1, Alex Dive (Mnt), 11.9, 2, Levi Stewart (Waihi Bch), 10.53, 3, Fraser Falconer (Auck), 6.7, 4
Heat 8
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 11.83, 1, Harry Macintosh (Waiheke), 8.4, 2, Tane Wallis (Piha), 5.57, 3, William Van Der Beek (Mnt), 2.93, 4

Open Men’s Division Quarterfinals
Heat 1

Luke Cederman (Auck), 18.87, 1, Maz Quinn (Gis), 15.17, 2, Dylan Preston (WGM), 10.73, 3, Bachelor Tipene (Tara), 8.37, 4
Heat 2
Bobby Hansen (Gis), 12, 1, Matt Hewitt (Mnt), 11.87, 2, Coby Perkovich (Aus), 11.53, 3, Joe Gethen (Ham), 11.03, 4
Heat 3
Billy Stairmand (Rag), 17.6, 1, Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha), 13.9, 2, Daniel Kereopa (Rag), 13.83, 3, Callum Chuter (Mnt), 10.4, 4
Heat 4
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 13.77, 1, Sid West (GB), 12.93, 2, Alex Dive (Mnt), 10.8, 3, Harry Macintosh (Waiheke), 10.17, 4

Open Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Bobby Hansen (Gis), 14.47, 1, Maz Quinn (Gis), 14.2, 2, Luke Cederman (Auck), 13.27, 3, Matt Hewitt (Mnt), 11.67, 4
Heat 2
Billy Stairmand (Rag), 17.6, 1, Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 13.7, 2, Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha), 12.83, 3, Sid West (GB), 9.1, 4

Open Men’s Division Final
Bobby Hansen (Gis)
Maz Quinn (Gis)
Billy Stairmand (Rag)
Taylor Hutchison (Rag)

Open Women’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Ella Williams (Whmata), 15.8, 1, Jessica Santorik (Rag), 12.2, 2, Saffi Vette (Gis), 9.53, 3, Claudia Fraser (Piha), 8.1, 4
Heat 2
Gabriella Sansom (Auck), 12.9, 1, Indica Ratima (Rag), 11, 2, Kelly Clarkeson (Rag), 10.9, 3, Tiana-Breeze de Mooij (Mnt), 7.93, 4

Open Women’s Division Final
Ella Williams (Whmata), 13.43, 1, Jessica Santorik (Rag), 12.13, 2, Gabriella Sansom (Auck), 12.10, 3, Indica Ratima (Rag), 9.57

Information
For more information on the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths please contact Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.  Alternatively, please contact Rip Curl Marketing Manager Leon Parkin on 021386473 or email lparkin@ripcurl.co.nz.

Imagery
Web clips and newsfeeds will be distributed free of charge from the event. Please contact Ben Kennings for further details.

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

Follow Surfing New Zealand
Keep in touch with all the surfing info from around the country by following Surfing New Zealand’s social media networks – @surfingNZ across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

Event Hotline
The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506. This will be updated daily at with venues, divisions contested and conditions.

Sponsors
Generous support from Rip Curl, Galbraiths, Radio Hauraki, Point Boardriders and Surfing New Zealand has made this event possible.

Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by:

Sport NZ
SunSmart

Stairmand Tames Raw Swell Best

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Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.

National Champion Billy Stairmand (Rag) took no time to show everyone how to tame unruly West Coast swells on Day 1 of the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths held at Manu Bay, Raglan today (Friday 5th May).

Stairmand surfed with precision in his own back yard progressing through to the second round with ease posting a 16.0 point heat total.

Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.
Billy Stairmand. Image courtesy of Cory / NZ Surfing Magazine.

The swell was solid although not the anticipated 2.0m swell that was forecasted.  However it was the surface conditions and strong currents that upset the swell making life challenging for the best surfers in New Zealand to find the right waves.

Stairmand comes into the event after having won his third straight National Title but the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths has eluded him for the past five years.  His form today suggests he will be the surfer to beat when the event concludes on Saturday afternoon.

As always, the day was set up for the natural footers with the likes of Taylor Hutchison (Rag), Bobby Hansen (Gis), Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha), Matt Hewitt (Mnt) and Alex Dive (Mnt) all joining Stairmand in winning their first round heats.

However, not everything went the natural footers way with ex-local Luke Cederman surfing to a massive 15.53 point heat total thanks to his patented big forehand hacks.  The only other goofy foot surfers to join Cederman in winning their heats was Raglan’s Chris Malone, a finalist in 2016 as well as young Mount Maunganui surfer Dylan Preston.  Preston caused the upset of the round edging defending champion Maz Quinn (Gis) into second place in their heat.  Quinn still advanced to the second round but will need to find some old form if he is to have another shot at defending his title for the third time tomorrow.

Preston’s win causes Quinn to meet up with Cederman in the second round as well as number one seed Harrison Whiteside (Chch) and ex-national representative Nick White (Mnt).  It will be the highlight of the early morning heats as the event nears the quarterfinal stage.

The afternoon conditions improved by the time the Open Women’s Division hit the water and Auckland’s Gabriella Sansom (Albany) that attacked her first heat to post a 12.87 point heat total and advance through to the semifinals.

Unlike the Men’s Division, it was the goofy foot surfers that dominated in the Women’s Division with Sansom being joined by defending champion Ella Williams (WGM) and 2005 event champion Kelly Clarkson (Rag) who both won their heats.

Clarkson will face Sansom in the semifinal along with Indica Ratima (Rag) and Tiana – Breeze de Mooij (Mnt).  Meanwhile Wiliams will go up against four time event champion Jessica Santorik (Rag), Saffi Vette (Gis) and Claudia Fraser (Piha).

The final day of the event will be streamed live by Garage TV on their Facebook page from 8:00am – 12:00pm at which point the broadcast will switch to Sky Sport on channel 53 for the last four hours of the event.

Action will take place between 8am – 4pm tomorrow (Saturday 6th May).  The swell is expected to ease overnight and throughout the day.

The Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths also includes the all-time Saturday night gathering at the YOT Club thanks to Galbraiths.  This year’s entertainment includes People of Paris and Mangrooves.

The event is the fourth of five events on the New Zealand Surf Series with the final event being the Backdoor BayBash being held in the Hawkes Bay during November.

Please see below for results from Day 1 of the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths held at Manu Bay, Raglan today (Friday 5th May).

Open Men’s Division Round of 64
Heat 1

Bachelor Tipene (Tara), 10.07, 1, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 9.23, 2, Jeremy Grainger (Tara), 9.13, 3, Marc Moore (Auck), 8.63, 4
Heat 2
Dylan Preston (WGM), 11.17, 1, Maz Quinn (Gis), 8.33, 2, Daniel Tingey (Auck), 6.97, 3, Zac Curle (Waihi Bch), 5.93, 4
Heat 3
Nick White (Mnt), 12.27, 1, Nat Hughes (Rag), 10.97, 2, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 8.5, 3, Jacob Warnes (Mnt), 7.37, 4
Heat 4
Luke Cederman (Auck), 15.53, 1, Thomas Carter (Waihi Bch), 11.47, 2, Manu Scott – Arrieta (Sandy Bay), 9.37, 3, Lockie O’Connor (Mnt), 4.6, 4
Heat 5
Matt Hewitt (Mnt), 13.9, 1, Coy Perkovich (Aus), 12.16, 2, Jack Lee (Whaka), 9.17, 3, Josh Curtis (Auck), 5.17, 4
Heat 6
Joe Gethen (Ham), 10.83, 1, Ben Kennings (WGM), 10.37, 2, Nick Hardie (Rag), 6.6, 3, Simon Deken (Tara), n/s
Heat 7
Chris Malone (Rag), 12.6, 1, Ben Poulter (Waihi Bch), 12.4, 2, Malachi Farrant (Rag), 7.2, 3, Kora Cooper (Rag), 7.17, 4
Heat 8
Bobby Hansen (Gis), 14.27, 1, Conor McLennan (Chch), 11.27, 2, Ben Smith (Coro), 7.13, 3, Ben Storey (T Awa), 2.33, 4
Heat 9
Billy Stairmand (Rag), 16, 1, Daniel Kereopa (Rag), 12.4, 2, Usman Trioko (IND), 11.2, 3, Dylan Herk (Nthlnd), 3.38, 4
Heat 10
Callum Chuter (Mnt), 11.23, 1, Jay Piper – Healion (Whiti), 9.13, 2, Rian Boyd (Auck), 8.2, 3, Jayden Willoughby (Rag), 5.57, 4
Heat 11
Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 12.43, 1, Deane Hishon (Rag), 9.97, 2, Travis Morton (Waihi Bch), 9.43, 3, Luke Griffin (Mnt), 9.17, 4
Heat 12
Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha), 13.77, 1, Larry Fisher (Rag), 12.43, 2, Zen Wallis (Piha), 10.9, 3, Miles Ratima (Rag), 9.03, 4
Heat 13
Alex Dive (Mnt), 14.07, 1, Tane Wallis (Piha), 11.3, 2, Jayson Robinson (Rag), 11, 3, Sean Peggs (Tairua), 8.67, 4
Heat 14
Sid West (GB), 11.2, 1, William Van Der Beek (Mnt), 8.7, 2, Phil Willoughby (Rag), 6.8, 3, Andrew Archibald (Rag), 3.47, 4
Heat 15
Harry Macintosh (Waiheke), 13.43, 1, Jack Rosewarne (T Awa), 6.53, 4, Fraser Falconer (Auck), 11.83, 2, Geoff Hutchison (Rag), 10.3, 3
Heat 16
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 15.13, 1, Levi Stewart (Waihi Bch), 12.43, 2, Jarred Hancox (Tara), 9.8, 3, Chris Wilkes (Tara), 4.93, 4

Open Women’s Round of 20
Heat 1

Indica Ratima (Rag), 2, 1, Celeste Calway (Waihi Beach), 1, 2, Poppie Holland (Rag), N/S
Heat 2
Kelly Clarkeson (Rag), 11.1, 1, Jessica Santorik (Rag), 9.53, 2, Grace Spiers (Whmata), 8.73, 3, Ariel Hughes (Rag), 8.33, 4
Heat 1
Saffi Vette (Gis), 11.8, 1, Indica Ratima (Rag), 10.2, 2, Brie Bennett (Rag), 7.8, 3, Billie Scott (Whangarei), 5.7, 4
Heat 2
Ella Williams (Whmata), 11.1, 1, Tiana-Breeze de Mooij (Mnt), 8.73, 2, Aimee Brown (GB), 8.3, 3, Celeste Calway (Waihi Beach), 3.63, 4
Heat 3
Gabriella Sansom (Auck), 12.9, 1, Jessica Santorik (Rag), 11.2, 2, Ariana Shewry (Oakura), 7.63, 3, Georgia Wederell (Chch), 4
Heat 4
Kelly Clarkeson (Rag), 10.6, 1, Claudia Fraser (Piha), 8.73, 2, Gabrielle Paul (Piha), 6.83, 3, Zhana Hutchieson (Tara), 4.77, 4

Information
For more information on the Rip Curl Pro presented by Galbraiths please contact Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.  Alternatively, please contact Rip Curl Marketing Manager Leon Parkin on 021386473 or email lparkin@ripcurl.co.nz.

Imagery
Web clips and newsfeeds will be distributed free of charge from the event. Please contact Ben Kennings for further details.

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

Follow Surfing New Zealand
Keep in touch with all the surfing info from around the country by following Surfing New Zealand’s social media networks – @surfingNZ across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

Event Hotline
The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506. This will be updated daily at with venues, divisions contested and conditions.

Sponsors
Generous support from Rip Curl, Galbraiths, Radio Hauraki, Point Boardriders and Surfing New Zealand has made this event possible.

Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by:

Sport NZ
SunSmart

Whiteside Trounces Opponents For Maiden NZ Surf Series Victory

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Harrison Whiteside. Image courtesy of Jack Hawke.
Harrison Whiteside. Image courtesy of Jack Hawke.

Christchurch surfer Harrison Whiteside (21) has trounced his opponents in the final of the Open Men’s Division at the 2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Championships completed today (Monday 24th April).

The result catapults Whiteside seven places up the rankings to number one on the New Zealand Surf Series with two events remaining this year.

The final day of the dual sanctioned Surfing New Zealand, South Island Surfing Association event was contested in clean 1.0m waves at Gore Bay after New Brighton dawned to a calm ocean for the third straight day.

Harrison Whiteside. Image courtesy of Jack Hawke.
Harrison Whiteside. Image courtesy of Jack Hawke.

Whiteside posted a 16.57 point heat total out of a possible 20 in the final to defeat Anthony Hema (Bull), Tane Wallis (Piha) and Conor McLennan (Chch).

Known for going to the air whenever possible, Whiteside did not hold back in the final boosting a big frontside air reverse to post a nine point ride and put a significant gap between him and his three opponents.

Buller’s Anthony Hema finished runner up in the final narrowly ousting Wallis who finished in third and triple finalist Conor McLennan in fourth.

While Whiteside took the glory in the premier division, he could not stop Raglan’s Taylor Hutchison from notching up his third win of the season in the Under 20 Boys Division.

Hutchison surfed to a 12.77 point heat total in the final with Conor McLennan going two places better than the Open Division with a runner-up finish ahead of Dunedin’s Ruben Peyroux in third and Henry Hawke (Chch) in fourth.

Hutchison’s win leaves him in second place on the overall rankings still trailing Whiteside but with one event up his sleeve to catch the Christchurch surfer.

McLennan had to settle for a second runner up finish in the Under 17 Boys Division when 13-year-old Myka Black claimed not only the Under 17s but also the Under 14 Boys Division for two victories over the weekend.

Black’s best performance came in the Under 17s with a 14.27 point heat total eclipsing McLennan’s 9.7 point total.  Double finalist Ruben Peyroux finished the final in third place ahead of Dara O’Malley (Chch) in fourth.

In the Under 14 Boys Division, Black defeated James Millar (Chch), Liam Heasley (Chch) and Jack Mckenzie (Chch) who finished second through fourth respectively.

In the Senior Divisions, it was Hema that shined again picking up a win in the Over 35s Division and a third in the Over 28s Division.  The Over 28s was won by Dunedin’s Josh Thickpenny and the Over 45 Men’s Division was claimed by number one seed, Neill Robb (Chch).

The Longboard Division final was a battle between current rankings leader Zen Wallis (Piha) and local surfer Hugh Ritchie.  Wallis eventually got the nod with a 13.5 point heat total compared with Ritchie’s 11.5.  The two surfers finish the year in the same overall ranking after the five events contested.

Finishing third in the Longboard Division final was William Wallace (Chch) who had looked impressive all event in the bigger conditions with Jack Hawke (Chch) finishing in fourth place.

Participants across the eight divisions vied for $9,000 in cash and prizes.  The 2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Championships featured senior divisions – Open Men, Over 28s, 35s, 45s and Longboard plus the Under 20, 17 and 14 Boys Divisions.

Please see below for final results from the 2Degrees Men’s Canterbury Surfing Championships completed at Gore Bay today (Monday 24th April 2017).

Open Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 12, 1, Anthony Hema (Bull), 11.83, 2, Henry Hawke (Chch), 11.2, 3, Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 11.13, 4
Heat 2
Tane Wallis (Piha), 12.9, 1, Conor McLennan (Chch), 10.33, 2, Nick Tuhikarama (Chch), 8.97, 3, Hugh Ritchie (ChCh), 8.93, 4

Open Men’s Division Final
Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 16.57, 1, Anthony Hema (Bull), 12.17, 2, Tane Wallis (Piha), 11.83, 3, Conor McLennan (Chch), 8.6, 4

Under 20 Boys Division Final
Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 12.8, 1, Conor McLennan (Chch), 9.5, 2, Ruben Payroux (Dun), 9.4, 3, Henry Hawke (Chch), 7.5, 4

Under 17 Boys Division Final
Myka Black (Chch), 14.3, 1, Conor McLennan (Chch), 9.7, 2, Ruben Peyroux (Dun), 8.43, 3, Dara O’Malley (Chch), 6.07, 4

Under 14 Boys Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Myka Black (Chch), 12.2, 1, Jack Mckenzie (Waikuku), 7, 2, Luke Rogers (Dun), 3.4, 3
Heat 2
Liam Heasley (Chch), 8.03, 1, James Millar (Chch), 7.7, 2, Campbell Heasley (Chch), 5.9, 3

Under 14 Boys Division Final
Myka Black (Chch), 12.4, 1, James Millar (Chch), 5.8, 2, Liam Heasley (Chch), 5.1, 3, Jack Mckenzie (Waikuku), 3.9, 4

Over 28 Men’s Division Final
Josh Thickpenny (Dun), 14.5, 1, Alan Temoananui (Kaik), 8.5, 2, Anthony Hema (Bul), 7.63, 3, Ben Rees (Chch), 7.6, 4

Over 35 Men’s Division Final
Anthony Hema (Bull), 11.8, 1, Steve Lee (Bull), 9.77, 2, Aaron Lock (Chch), 8.33, 3, Nick Black (Chch), 0, 4

Over 45 Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Neil Robb (Chch), 11.3, 1, Mark Robberds (Chch), 7.03, 2, Shane Wilson (Chch), 6.17, 3
Heat 2
Patrick Bonner (Chch), 11, 1, Dean Jeffries (Chch), 8.33, 2, Cameron Rennie (Chch), 7.2, 3

Over 45 Men’s Division Final
Neil Robb (Chch), 12.5, 1, Patrick Bonner (Chch), 9.7, 2, Dean Jeffries (Chch), 8.4, 3, Mark Robberds (Chch), 7.6, 4

Men’s Longboard Division Final
Zen Wallis (Piha), 13.5, 1, Hugh Ritchie (Chch), 11.5, 2, William Wallace (Dun), 10.1, 3, Jack Hawke (Chch), 9.5, 4

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.

Follow Surfing New Zealand
Keep in touch with all the surfing info from around the country by following Surfing New Zealand’s social media networks – @surfingnz across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by:

Sport NZ
SunSmart

JORDY SMITH WINS RIP CURL PRO BELLS BEACH

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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.

Follow Surfing New Zealand
Keep in touch with all the surfing info from around the country by following Surfing New Zealand’s social media networks – @surfingnz across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat.

Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by:

Sport NZ
SunSmart

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