Hyundai National Surfing Championships
Surfing New Zealand
Piha Beach, Auckland
13 - 19 January 2013
Piha Dishes up Dreadful Conditions on Day 3 Of Champs
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 15 January, 2013 : - - Entering the halfway stage of the 2013 Hyundai National Surfing Championships being held at Piha Beach, Auckland this week, the West Coast beach dished up dreadful conditions for much of the day as strong onshore winds laced with rain lashed the area.
The surf increased throughout the day with solid 1.5m plus swells washing through the line up. Despite the conditions, a full day of surfing took place with a number of divisions being contested through to the semifinals or finals stage.
The Men's Longboard and Stand Up Paddleboard Divisions endured the worst of the conditions early in the morning. Despite the conditions the best longboarders in New Zealand proved they could beat their opponents in any conditions. Daniel Procter (Gis), winner of the first Hyundai Tour event of the year held at Raglan, was one of several top seeds that placed second their heats to move through to the semifinals. Procter was joined by New Zealand representatives Matt Cockayne (Auck) and Phil Morris (Auck) who also both placed second.
However, conditions being unruly as they were suited proponents of shortboarding just as much and it was Ben Poulter (Rag), Tane Wallis (Auck) and Glen Johnson (Auck) that all won their heats in the difficult conditions. The Stand Up Paddleboard Division contested the same conditions but Daniel Kereopa (Rag) and defending national champion Shayne Baxter (Chch) impressed with their surfing posting 15.0 and 13.0 point heat totals to win their heats.
The semifinals of both divisions were called off mid-afternoon as conditions deteriorated further with the outgoing tide and strengthening westerly winds made the ocean look like a washing machine. Before the event was called off, several rounds of junior divisions were contested, both boys and girls, over the full tide.
In the Under 18 Girls Division Gabriela Sansom (Auck) kicked off the first round with a great performance scoring 13.0 points to win the first heat. Number one seed Ella Williams (WGM) followed suit in the second heat posting an identical score before Jayda Martin - Fitzharris (Gis) finished the round with a heat win scoring 8.3 points to move through to the semifinals.
The Under 14 Boys Division saw exceptional performances from the two top seeds Kehu Butler (Mnt) and Tane Bowden (WGM). Butler top scored with 15.0 points to make it through to the Under 14 Boys Division final. Christchurch surfer Sam Sands surfed an excellent heat to progress alongside Butler and make his first national final. Sands looked smooth on his forehand as he worked the reforms in the middle of the beach.
Tane Bowden (WGM) and Daniel Farr (Tara) moved through in the second semifinal after Farr got a last minute wave to relegate Jonas Tawharu (Mnt) to third after Tawharu held a progression position for 19 minutes of the heat.
With the less than desirable conditions, the premier Open Men's Division had their second consecutive lay day. Only sixteen surfers remain in the Open Men's Division and officials will wait for optimal conditions before sending the surfers into the water to contest the quarterfinals.
The surf is expected to build again for day four (Wednesday 16th January). Winds will swing back to the west and then southwest late in the day. Competition will commence at 8:00am on Wednesday 16th January.
Source: Surfing New Zealand
Author: Ben Kennings
Tags: National Champs, Hyundai, New Zealand