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Groms go wild at Watergate Bay in Newquay

Will Bailey © Rob Tibbles

 

 

The Rip Curl GromSearch
Presented by POSCA

Watergate Bay, Newquay UK
16 - 17 July 2014

Rain, sun and everything in between for GromSearch event

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 20 August, 2014 - So, that’s it. At the beginning of 2014 we teamed up with Rip Curl to bring a series of events to the flourishing young Surfer scene of the UK, designed to identify the best talent in our Nation, whilst providing memorable events that the competitors, parents & all relish and enjoy being a part of. Following a pretty tricky year of negotiating summer swells, or lack of them to be exact, we were super stoked to be able to give the competitors the waves and platform to impress the judges, and impress they did!

Day 1’s morning was full of excitement and a lot of frothing groms, over 110 entries to be exact, making it the largest Grom Search to date. 1-2ft onshore was what was expected, and that’s what we got, so the U12 Boys & U14 girls division took to the water, conditions suiting them well with strong performances from many.

As the beach filled up we had Posca on hand to keep all entertained, with professional artist Toshy using his incredible artistic skills to impress many and create board art like many had never seen. Free give aways and trial areas for Posca pens meant that the tented village was packed, “its great to see our product making so many kids happy right now, being creative holds no age boundaries” said the Posca staff.

Day 1 afternoon was a slightly different story, boys & girls Under 14’s & 12’s running until a rather unpleasant (and unpredicted) rain weather front hit, the change in conditions mixed with a dropping tide meaning the surf turned uncontestable. Contest organisers made the call to call the day to an end, banking on the reliability of the much improved forecast for day 2.

Day 2 dawned, the swell had arrived, to the naked eye it was messy 2-3ft and all sorts of stormy, but all the talent amongst the draw saw was scorable waves, puntable sections and rippable faces. After a morning of fantastic competition, the tide turned and so did the weather, right on time to shed some light on the business end of the event and the fascinating battles erupting in the water.

The U12 Boys final highlighted the commitment and skills of the next generation as the rough seas were negotiated by competitors. We weren’t sure if Stanley Norman was happier about winning the division or beating his brother Bertie, either way he was stoked to take the U12 title with progressive surfing beyond his years. U12 Girls final was a 3 girl affair with Ffion Hughes putting together another year of solid performances and taking the wins again for 2014.

U14 Boys division saw the largest entry, and competition was fierce. Seth Morris impressed the judges, taking heats wins in the U16 category also, but the creative performance of Mexico’s Eno James was too much to overcome for the other Surfers with as he did the double with wins in Croyde and Watergate with style. U14 Girls saw good friends Micha Maguire and Jess Knight battle it out, with Ffion Hughes again putting in a stellar performance, but Micha showed her prowess and took the win.

U16 Boys division was a fascinating final, with the two highly sought after spots at the European Grom Search finals up for grabs and not many points between the remaining surfers. Angus Scotney couldn’t quite find the scores in the final and took 4th, with good friends Alex Gibson (3rd) and Will Bailey (2nd) battling hard, but ultimately Max Payne turned it on in the final and took the Watergate win. U16 Girls again saw Jess Knight (3rd) and Micha Maguire (2nd) battle it out, whilst flying the Welsh flag Niamh Mathias came in 4th and Bethan Lewis surfed with intent and got the scores needed for the Grom Search Watergate title.

Following the two Search events, with the Welsh leg cancelled through lack of swell, Niamh Mathias and Meg Niblett from the Girls Under 16, whilst Will Bailey and Eno James from the Boys Under 16 will now progress on to represent the UK in the European Rip Curl Grom Search finals held later this year. We wish them the best of luck.

 

 

U12 girls

3 – Carys Potter

2 – Tegan Blackford

1 – Ffion Hughes

U12 open

4 – Max Hudson

3 – Tom Reeves

2 – Bertie Norman

1 – Stanley Norman

U14 girls

4 – Lily Mandeville

3 – Jess Knight

2 – Ffion Hughes

1 – Micha Maguire

U14 boys

4 – Kamron Matthews

3 – Finn Collins

2 – Seth Morris

1 – Eno James

U16 girls

4 – Niamh Mathias

3 – Jess Knight

2 – Micha Maguire

1 – Bethan Lewis

U16 boys

4 – Angus Scotney

3 – Alex Gibson

2 – Will Bailey

1 – Max Payne

Highest individual wave score – 8.33 Angus Scotney

Most radical manoeuvre – Will Bailey, going big.

Author: 
Rob Tibbles
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