Cool Shoe South African Masters Surfing Championships
Surfing South Africa
Nahoon Reef, East London, South Africa
15 - 18 May, 2014
Event kicks off in strong onshore winds at Nahoon Reef
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 15 May, 2014 - The cream of South Africa’s surfers aged 31-and-over prevailed in testing conditions on the opening day of the 2014 Cool Shoe SA Masters Surfing Championships which got underway in strong onshore winds and unruly one to 1.5 metre waves at Nahoon Reef in East London.
A total of 23 heats featuring nearly 100 surfers in seven divisions took to the waves in the quest for individual and Provincial team honours. Border, the host association and seven-time team champions, made good use of their experience in home waters to get off to a flying start in defence of the Masters Cup they won in Mossel Bay last year.
Border’s Tyrell Johnson and former SA Open Champion Devyn Mattheys were the standouts in the Senior Men (Over 30 years) division while reigning World and SA Masters Champion Greg Emslie recorded the highest heat total in the Masters (O35) category. David Malherbe, the World Pro Am Champion back in 1990, then posted one of the highest heat totals of the day – 16.70 out of 20 – in the Kahunas (O45) despite a back injury incurred free-surfing on Tuesday.
The hosts did not have everything their own way though with Southern KZN’s Gary van Wieringen and Carl Roux, along with Ryan Ribbink (KwaZulu-Natal Central), starring in the Grandmasters (O40); Graeme Field from Western Province, last year’s team runners-up, winning his Masters encounter and Vince King and James Elliot (both Zululand) clinching heat victories in the Grandmasters (O40) and Senior Men respectively.
Nick Pike (Border), who finished ahead of defending SA champ Robin Lavery (Zululand), and Arthur Cowan (KZN Central) were the winners of the two heats in the Grandkahunas (O50) division.
Multiple World and SA Champion Chris Knutsen (KZNC) delivered a dominant performance in the Veterans (O55) while Tasha Mentasti (Southern Cape) relegated former two-time ISA Women’s World Champion and defending SA champion Heather Clark to the runner-up berth the Women’s (O35) division.
A switch to offshore winds and an increase in swell size is predicted for both tomorrow and the final day of the event on Saturday, which should make for dramatic viewing on the live streaming feed from the event.
The Cool Shoe SA Masters Surfing Championships is the first national surfing tournament to be webcast live on the internet. All the action can be followed live by going to www.streamit360.tv and activating the SURFING button on the page from midday onwards and throughout the finals on Saturday.
The 2014 Cool Shoe SA Masters Championships will decide seven individual South African champions and determine the top Provincial team. Each team member’s points will count towards the Masters Cup, which was won by Southern KZN in 2005 and 2006 and by Border from 2007 to 2013.