Australian Longboard Surfing Open
Kingscliff Beach, New South Wales
14 - 20 March 2017
Variable conditions keep competitors on their toes all day
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 18 March, 2017 - Australia's oldest professional surfer and one of the sports up and comers will both be chasing three titles each when the Australian Long Board Surfing Open resumes at Kingscliff Beach tomorrow.
Finals day will be a busy one professional surfer Michael Cottier and Noosa teenager Nick Brewer. Cottier, who turned 61 recently, is heading for his most successful Australian Open ever, making the finals in the Logger, Eight Foot and Over 60s events while at the other end of the age range Noosa’s Brewer is set to line up in the Nine Foot, Under 18s and will join Cottier in the Logger final.
Victorian Liam Griggs-Kennelly (who like Cottier surfed in the pros on Wednesday) has also made three finals and will be in the water for the Nine foot, Logger and Noserider.
Day four was surfed in 1-1.5 metre waves earlier deteriorating through the afternoon.
However, organisers are expecting the best conditions of the event for the fourth and final day tomorrow. Cottier said conditions were variable today, keeping him on his toes throughout the day.
“Conditions in every semi-final were different,” he explained. “Early on for the 60s the semi-final was surfed in on-shore high tide conditions. The high tide created a great challenge to catch a wave and walk the length of the board. I got on a real good wave in the Logger and that gave me a first place but then I had a quick change from white to yellow and I was back out for the Eight Foot.”
He said another good wave in the Eights gave him just enough to finish second in the heat behind Kingscliff local Dean Bevan who rocketed through to the finals and a chance to win the title for the fourth year in a row.
For Cottier it was one of his most successful days in the surf at Kingscliff. “It’s my first year in the Over 60s,” he said. “In previous years I’ve made the final in my age group – the over 50s and the eight foot.”
Kingscliff master surfer Wayne Gleave is also through to finals day along with Tweed Coaster Tony Rae (who recorded the highest two-wave score of the day with two impressive tube rides in the over 50s semi)and talented Hawaiian sisters Mason, Lola and Scarlett Schremmer. The talented trio will make up the bulk of the women’s under 18 competition while 10-year-old Scarlett and 16-year-old Mason will also compete in the open final – with Lola, 15, missing out after snapping her board in the heats.
Surfing action begins again in the morning with all the finals being held starting with the 8ft open at 7.30am (NSW) and culminating in the hotly contested over 70s at 2.30pm.
On the beach, activities start from 8.30am with beach activities for the Under 12s - including a treasure hunt for the Under 12s with sponsors prizes and easter eggs up for grabs. The old board display will be held from 9am with the Gold Coast Mini Garage Classic. There will also be a special Wacky Wave competition to raise money for Headspace.
The Wacky Wave is open to everyone - surfer or non-surfers - dress up in your craziest costume and take to the water prizes include two Volte wetsuit vouchers valued at more than 300.
The surfing action is expected to end at 3pm with the presentations being held at Kingscliff Hotel from 4pm.
Australian Longboard Surfing Open is the only World Surf League sanctioned longboard event on Australia's east coast featuring some of the world’s best longboard surfers. It honours the history of longboard surfing together with amateur divisions and specialty surfing, lives music, surf vehicle display, surf movies and more.