New Zealand’s elite surfers are set to contest the Health 2000 National Surfing Championship finals tomorrow (Saturday 12th January) after two lay days that have given the athletes plenty of rest to make a challenge for their respective titles.

While surfers such as Ricardo Christie (Gis), Billy Stairmand (Rag) and Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha) have been resting, surfers across the 29 divisions contested this week have been feverishly hunting podium finishes and in some cases, titles.

The penultimate day of the event was held at Stent Road today with a small 1.0m swell and light onshore winds providing the platform to crown four champions and determine a further four sets of finalists.

The Under 18 Boys Division saw two intensely fought semifinals with high scores across the board.  Whakatane surfer Jack Lee continued to impress and along with Hamilton’s Caleb Cutmore, they won through the first semifinal at the expense of Taylor O’Leary (Mur) and Jacob Saunders (Mnt).

In the second semifinal, it was the two Tom’s in Robinson (Whangarei) and Carter (Waihi Beach) that overcame Luke Griffin (Mnt) and Finn Vette (Gis) in the battle of the goofy-footers.

It wasn’t all bad for Vette who had earlier advanced through to the final of the Under 16 Boys Division along with Navryn Malone (Rag), Tom Butland (Tara) and Tom Robinson.  Robinson will be on double duty for the final day contesting both junior divisions.

The Bodyboard Division was reintroduced this week for the first time since 2010.  It was three-time champion Adrian Bray (Piha) that wound it back a few years for the win with a 13.9 point heat total, his last title coming 26 years ago in 1992.

Kelvin Weir (Opunake) claimed his third title in the Kneeboard Division putting pay to defending champion Craig MacDonald (Auck) in the process.

Late in the afternoon it was Geoff Hutchison (Rag) that won the Over 45 Men’s Division final on his last wave posting a 5.47 to nudge past Darren Kiwi (Mnt) with a 12.47 point heat total.

Chris Blain won the Over 45 Men’s Division final to ensure local surfers were well represented on the winners podium, Blain picking up the fourth title for the region.

Saturday (January 12th) is the final day of the event and sees the semifinals of the Open Men and Women’s Divisions as well as finals for ten divisions.  The surf is expected to peak overnight and fade throughout the day with light southeast winds.

See below for results from day six of the Health 2000 National Surfing Championships held at Stent Road, Taranaki today (Friday 11th January).

Under 16 Boys Semifinals
Heat 1

Finn Vette (Gis), 12.87, 1, Navryn Malone (Rag), 11.13, 2, James Millar (Chch), 10.8, 3
Heat 2
Tom Butland (Tara), 15.17, 1, Tom Robinson (Whngrei), 13, 2, Kora Cooper (Rag), 9.6, 3

Under 18 Boys Quarterfinals
Heat 1

Jacob Saunders (Mnt), 15.7, 1, Taylor O’Leary (Mur), 11.43, 2, Alex O’Dwyer (Whaka), 11.06, 3, Tom Butland (Tara), 9.97, 4
Heat 2
Jack Lee (Whaka), 14.66, 1, Caleb Cutmore (Ham), 10.5, 2, Kora Cooper (Rag), 10.37, 3, Jacob Buckle (Whangrei), 9.73, 4
Heat 3
Finn Vette (Gis), 15.34, 1, Thomas Carter (Waihi Bch), 10.37, 2, Ruben Peyroux (Dun), 10, 3, Jackson Peak (Auck), 8.6, 4
Heat 4
Luke Griffin (Mnt), 14.07, 1, Tom Robinson (Whngrei), 12.77, 2, Josef Jungwirth (Rag), 9.8, 3, Corban Grainger (Tara), 4.03, 4

Over 40 Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Manu Schafer (Tara), 12.77, 1, Alan Te Moananui (Chch), 9.8, 2, Deane Hishon (Rag), 9.4, 3, Ben Kennings (Whmata), 4.67, 4
Heat 2
Dwaine Mataa (Tara), 14.6, 1, Jamie Andrews (Tara), 12.84, 2, Patrick Braithwaite (Gis), 7.4, 3, Shaun Coffey (Tara), 5.2, 4

Kneeboard Semifinals
Heat 1

Craig Macdonald (Auck), 12.37, 1, Kenton Osmond (Mur), 10.53, 2, Zen Wallis (Piha), 7.56, 3, Craig Hooper (Mnt), 7.27, 4
Heat 2
Kelvin Weir (Tara), 14.33, 1, Tracey Skelton (Tara), 8.67, 2, Steve Croton (Tara), 6.4, 3, Gary Sawyer (Foxton), 4.26, 4

Kneeboard Final
Kelvin Weir (Tara), 13.9, 1, Kenton Osmond (Mur), 11.2, 2, Tracey Skelton (Tara), 8.06, 3, Craig Macdonald (Auck), 7.03, 4

Open Bodyboard Round 1
Heat 1

Adrian Coutts (Tara), 7.4, 1, Adrian Bray (Piha), 7, 2, Matiu Adams (Tara), 6.34, 3, Marguerite Vujcich (Hbay), 4.6, 4
Heat 2
Rangi Bisson (Tara), 13, 1, Gareth Collins (Tara), 12.9, 2, Rah Paewai (Tara), 5, 3, Dana Adams (Tara), 2, 4
Heat 3
Michael Dromgool (Tara), 12.8, 1, Jeremy Stark (Tara), 12.4, 2, Kurt Bullot (Aus), 9.33, 3, Nick Enstrom (Mnt), 7.24, 4

Open Bodyboard Semifinals
Heat 1

Adrian Bray (Piha), 16.6, 1, Gareth Collins (Tara), 9.46, 2, Rangi Bisson (Tara), 9.23, 3
Heat 2
Jeremy Stark (Tara), 11.8, 1, Michael Dromgool (Tara), 9.03, 2, Adrian Coutts (Tara), 7.33, 3

Open Bodyboard Final
Adrian Bray (Piha), 13.9, 1, Gareth Collins (Tara), 9.83, 2, Jeremy Stark (Tara), 7.2, 3, Michael Dromgool (Tara), 5.6, 4

Over 35 Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Chris Malone (Gis), 12.5, 1, Jeremy Curd (Tara), 11.63, 2, Danny Kaweroa (Tara), 10.4, 3, Kani Haig (Gis), 6.7, 4
Heat 2
Luke Kerr (Tara), 15.9, 1, Dwaine Mataa (Tara), 10.63, 2, Jarred Hancox (Tara), 10.3, 3, Manu Schafer (Tara), 9.37, 4

Over 40 Men’s Division Semifinals
Heat 1

Manu Schafer (Tara), 12.77, 1, Alan Te Moananui (Chch), 9.8, 2, Deane Hishon (Rag), 9.4, 3, Ben Kennings (Whmata), 4.67, 4
Heat 2
Dwaine Mataa (Tara), 14.6, 1, Jamie Andrews (Tara), 12.84, 2, Patrick Braithwaite (Gis), 7.4, 3, Shaun Coffey (Tara), 5.2, 4

Over 45 Men’s Division Final
Geoff Hutchison (Rag), 12.47, 1, Darren Kiwi (Mnt), 12.07, 2, Patrick Braithwaite (Gis), 8.6, 3, Deane Hishon (Rag), 5.67, 4

Over 50 Men’s Division Final
Chris Blain (Tara), 14.2, 1, Brian Young (Auck), 12.3, 2, Andrew Mann (Auck), 7.87, 3, Geoff Hutchison (Rag), 3.23, 4

The longest running surfing event in New Zealand takes place over seven days from January 6-12 along the Taranaki Coastline.  The event was last contested in the Taranaki region in 2007 and has been held in the region on nine other occasions.  This year’s edition is being hosted by Oakura Boardriders Club.

In the 55 year history of the event the Health 2000 National Surfing Championships has grown to encompass 29 divisions spread across all disciplines and age groups making for a largely inclusive event, filled with high level surfing as well as good times in and out of the water.  Over 330 entries have been received for the event.

The Health 2000 National Surfing Championships forms the first leg of the 2019 New Zealand Surf Series which in turn provides a vital pathway toward the ISA World Surfing Games, a key Olympic qualification event in 2019.

Further Information
For further information on the Health 2000 National Surfing Championships 2019 please contact Surfing New Zealand’s Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.

Event Hotline
The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506.  This will be updated daily at approximately 7am with venue, divisions contested and conditions.

Social Media
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