Australia-wide grom events to extend for three more years
Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 14 June, 2014 - Coolangatta - Australia’s surfing stars of the future will be on show when the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps national series begins in September. Regarded as one of the major stepping stones in the development of young Australian surfers, the 10-event Wahu Surfer Groms Comps will cater for surfers from Under 8 to Under 14 and will be held in New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania. The Under 8 will be a mixed division with parent assists, while competition will be held in both boys and girls in the Under 10, Under 12 and Under 14 divisions.
The series is a key element in the extension of Wahu’s partnership with Surfing Australia. In addition to backing the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps for a further three years, Wahu will also continue as a support sponsor for the VEGEMITE SurfGroms junior surfing program for three more years. This year Wahu will also become the naming rights sponsor of the Wahu Australian Bodyboard Titles as part of the Australian Surf Festival at Coffs Harbour from August 14-18.
Success at the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps has launched the careers of many of Australia’s most promising surfers.
Previous champions include former World Junior Champion Matt Banting, World Under 16 Champion Jacob Willcox and many members of the Australian junior team that has contested the ISA World Junior Championship including Luke Hynd, Eli Steele, Kai Hing, Chris Zaffis, Quinn Bruce, Isabella Nichols, Holly Wawn and Laura Poncini.
The next crop of young stars making their way through the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps ranks include Jaggar Batholomew (son of 1978 World Champion Wayne) and Jay Occhilupo (son of 1999 World Champion Mark).
“Surfing and the beach lifestyle are both enduring and growing and we at Wahu are delighted to be part of this Australian lifestyle identity,” said Managing Director of Wahu Tim Britz.
“Wahu has been in partnership with Surfing Australia for more than seven years in progressing the grassroots platforms in developing healthy, capable and safe young surfers. It is also encouraging to see that these events are meeting the needs of a wide range of participants including those young surfers aspiring to higher levels of competition as evidenced by the achievements of some past performers.”
Jenny Dobbyn of the Gold Coast has three children progressing through the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps. Kiani (14), and younger brothers Kai (12) and Tane (10), have been competing in the events for several years and Jenny said one of the highlights of the events was the travelling to the different venues.
“The Wahu Surfer Groms Comps are great for all the travelling as the kids get a chance to surf different breaks and try and come home with the trophy,” she said. “The week before an event in our house is pretty interesting. They all want to win but if they don’t they are okay with it and are just happy to be competing with their friends and getting into all the beach games.”
As an added bonus, the respective winners of the Under 14 boys’ and girls’ divisions from each event will receive an invite to attend an all-expenses paid, three-day Wahu Surf Camp at the Hurley Surfing Australia High Performance Centre.
Surfing Australia CEO Andrew Stark said: “We are very excited and appreciative to sign off on this new three-year agreement to continue the amazing success of the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps nationally.
“The Wahu Surfer Groms Comps program is a key program in our sport development pathway and offers our youngest emerging talent and junior surfing enthusiasts a fantastic introductory environment to compete and enjoy the sport and lifestyle of surfing. The partnership with iconic Australian brand Wahu has grown over the past few years and certainly there is great alignment between the fun Wahu beach toys and surfing which is seen as the highest ranked sport in Australia for fun.”
It just isn’t all about the action in the water at the Wahu Surfer Groms Comps with plenty of beach games to keep everyone entertained, while each entrant will also receive a Wahu Surfer Groms Comps t-shirt plus a Wahu beach product.
The first event will be at Sydney’s Northern Beaches on September 6-7.
Wahu Surfer Groms Comps Schedule:
EVENT 1 - Northern Beaches, NSW - September 6 -7, 2014
EVENT 2 - Coffs Harbour NSW - October 11-12, 2014
EVENT 3 - Kiama, NSW - October 18-19, 2014
EVENT 4 - Trigg Point, WA - November 8-9, 2014
EVENT 5 - Sunshine Coast, QLD - December 13-14, 2014
EVENT 6 – Cronulla, NSW - December 20-21, 2014
EVENT 7 - Gold Coast, QLD - January 10-11, 2015
EVENT 8 - Ocean Grove, VIC - January 31-February 1, 2015
EVENT 9 - Fleurieu Peninsula, SA - February 21, 2015
EVENT 10 - Clifton Beach, TAS - February 28, 2015