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Alex Dive repeats at Billabong Grom Series New Zealand


Alex Dive : photo NZ Surfing Magazine

Billabong Grom Series
Presented by Oceanbridge

Mount Maunganui New Zealand
2 - 3 February 2008

Dive Does It Again At Billabong Grom Series

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 3 February, 2008 : - - Alex Dive (Mnt) continued his summer of domination in the surf Sunday 3rd February when he won the premier under 16 boys division at event one of the Billabong Grom Series presented by Oceanbridge held at Mount Maunganui.  In a mirror image of the National Championships final two weeks ago the exact same four surfers hit the water today and Dive took out the final again in what was a very close battle.

With the swell failing to show any true signs of picking up on day two of the event the surfers had to deal with the small 0.5m swell conditions.  The lack of wind all morning made for clean conditions and only a light sea breeze eventuated late in the day. 

The fickle waves were to the advantage of Dive who has Tay Street as his backyard, surfing the place at every possible chance.  Come finals time he knew where to sit and picked off two 7.0 point rides in the middle of the final to jump into a lead he never relinquished.

Both Ben Poulter (Rag) and Blake Myers (WGM) challenged hard for the lead with the former holding down the top spot for the first half of the 20 minutes.  However once Dive secured two good rides the pressure went on.  Myers reacted late in the heat when he posted the heat high 8.33 point ride for a long lefthander that allowed him the chance to complete three powerful backhand turns. 

It was enough to push Myers into second equal with Poulter.  By way of his top scoring ride Myers finished in second position ahead of Poulter who also scored 13.33 with a highest score of 7.83 but the two surfers could not mach the consistency of Dive.  Johnny Hicks (Gis) who was looking for a breakthrough win at this event became wave starved in the final as the tide started to fill in and deteriorate conditions.  Hicks finished in a frustrating fourth.

Dive now leads the three event series where the winner of each division gets an air ticket and entry into the Billabong Occy Grom Comp held at Duranbah in Australia later in the year. Earlier in the day Poulter and Dive eliminated Paul Moretti (Mimiwhangata) and Fintan Cram (WGM) while Hicks and Myers eliminated Mark Pathemore (Tara) and Todd Doyle (Mnt).

Alexis Poulter (Rag) went two places better than her younger brother when she convincingly won the under 16 girls division scoring 14.50 in the final.  So convincing was her win that she had her fellow competitors requiring two wave combinations to catch her when the siren sounded to end the final.  Even though earlier in the day third placed surfer Rosa Thompson (Auck) had beaten Poulter in the semifinals, Poulter looked unstoppable when it counted.

Ella Williams (WGM) finished the final in second place for her best ever result in the under 16 girls division while Rosa Thompson had to settle for third on this occasion with Kristi Zarifeh (Chch) in fourth.

Under 14 boys surfer Tane Wallis (Piha) left his best surfing until the end of the weekend winning his final and in doing so racking up the highest heat score of the event to take home the Panasonic sound system.  Wallis scored 17.17 in the final again leaving his competitors in his wake requiring two score combinations to catch up. 

Wallis opened his account with a 9.50 and then scored a 7.67 late in the final to extend his lead.  The battle for the minor placings ensued after Wallis’ good start and it was Poulter that looked the strongest finishing in second place ahead of double finalist Dune Kennings (WGM) and Patxi Scott-Arrieta (Sandy Bay) in third and fourth place respectively.

Alethea Lock took a title back to Christchurch when she won the under 14 girls division in the tightest final of the day.  Lock scored 9.10 in the final to sneak past Ella Williams (WGM) and Jayda Fitzharris (Gis) in second and third with fellow Gisborne surfer Chloe Shutt finishing in fourth.  Lock and her travelling companion Zarifeh who also travelled north for the event will be more than happy with their results to start the Billabong Grom Series.  They now stand in contention for the series win and trip to Australia.

In the under 12 divisions it was Dune Kennings who took out the boys division with Bianca Sansom (Auck) beating her twin sister Gabrialla to take out the girls division.  Kennings was too strong for good friend Elliot Paerata-Reid (Piha) however Paerata Reid did hold the lead early when he posted a 7.0 point ride on the start hooter.  Kennings came back with a 13.17 heat total. 

Local surfers Jordan Griffin and Matt Hansen took out the minor placings in their first finals appearances at a national level.  Hannah Kohn (Gis) placed third in the girls with Dayna Story (Gis) in fourth.

Under 16 Boys Quarterfinals
Heat 1 Ben Poulter (Piha), 1, Fintan Cram (Whmata), 2, Fraser Chatham (Whmata), 3, Matt Brown (Mnt), 4
Heat 2 Alex Dive (Tauranga), 1, Paul Moretti (Whngmata), 2, Reno Marriott (Gis), 3, Chad Jones (Tara), N/S
Heat 3 Johnny Hicks (Gis), 1, Todd Doyle (Mnt), 2, Joe Moretti (Mimiwhangata), 3, Dune Kennings (Whmata), 4
Heat 4 Mark Parthemore (Tara), 1, Blake Myers (Whamata), 2, Patxi Scott-Arietta (Sandy Bay), 3, Peri Matenga (Mnt), 4

Under 16 Boys Semifinals
Heat 1 Ben Poulter (Piha), 1, Alex Dive (Tauranga), 2, Paul Moretti (Whngmata), 3, Fintan Cram (Whmata), 4
Heat 2 Johnny Hicks (Gis), 1, Blake Myers (Whamata), 2, Mark Parthemore (Tara), 3, Todd Doyle (Mnt), 4

Under 16 Boys Final
Alex Dive (Mnt), 1, Blake Myers (Whamata), 2, Ben Poulter (Piha), 3, Johnny Hicks (Gis), 4

Under 14 Boys Quarterfinals
Heat 1 Peri Matenga (Mnt), 1, Kahu Craig Te Ranga (Waihi Bch), 2, Mackenzie Christie (Tau), 3, Kurt Barker (Gis), 4
Heat 2 Tane Wallis (Piha), 1, Ben Poulter (Rag), 2, Wade Kindred (Muri), 3, Taylor Louie (Piha), 4
Heat 3 Dune Kennings (Whmata), 1, Waretini Wano (Piha), 2, Josh Taylor (Mnt), 3, Sam Haven (Muri), 4
Heat 4 Patxi Scott-Arietta, 1, Connor Pearson (Mnt), 2, Fintan Cram (Whmata), 3, Paul Moretti (Mimiwhangta), 4

Under 14 Boys Semifinals
Heat 1 Ben Poulter (Rag), 1, Tane Wallis (Piha), 2, Peri Matenga (Mnt), 3, Kahu Craig Te Ranga (Waihi Bch), 4
Heat 2 Patxi Scott-Arietta (Sandy Bay), 1, Dune Kennings (Whmata), 2, Connor Pearson (Mnt), 3, Waretini Wano (Piha), 4

Under 14 Boys Final
Tane Wallis (Piha), 1, Ben Poulter (Rag), 2, Dune Kennings (Whmata), 3, Patxi Scott-Arietta (Sandy Bay), 4

Under 12 Boys Semifinals
Heat 1 Elliot Paerata Reid (Piha), 1, Jordan Griffin (Mnt), 2, Ben Cochrane (Mnt), 3, Nick Mason (Mnt), 4
Heat 2 Dune Kennings (Whmata), 1, Matt Hansen (Mnt), 2, Manu Scott-Arietta (Sandy Bay), 3, Quin Matenga (Gis), 4

Under 12 Boys Final
Dune Kennings (Whmata), 1, Elliot Paerata Reid (Piha), 2, Jordan Griffin (Mnt), 3, Matt Hansen (Mnt), 4

Under 16 Girls Semifinals
Heat 1 Ella Williams (Whmata), 1, Kristi Zarifeh (Chch), 2, Alethea Lock (Chch), 3,|
Heat 2 Rosa Thompson (Auck), 1, Alexis Poulter (Rag), 2, Jayda Fitzharris (Gis), 3

Under 16 Girls Final
Alexis Poulter (Rag), 1, Ella Williams (Whmata), 2, Rosa Thompson (Auck), 3, Kristi Zarifeh (Chch), 4

Under 14 Girls Semifinals
Heat 1 Jayda Martin-Fitzharris (Gis), 1, Chloe Shutt (Gis), 2, Ebony Pearson (Gis), 3,
Heat 2 Ella Williams (Whmata), 1, Alethea Lock (Chch), 2, Gabriella McCarthy-Marriott (Gis), 3

Under 14 Girls Final
Alethea Lock (Chch), 1, Ella Williams (Whmata), 2, Jayda Martin-Fitzharris (Gis), 3 Chloe Shutt (Gis), 4

Under 12 Girls Final
Bianca Sansom (Auck), 1, Gabriela Sansom (Auck), 2, Hannah Kohn (Gis), 3, Dayna Story (Gis), 4

Make sure you get to witness some of these events this summer.  There will be some great surfing and plenty of fun activities to partake in.  Keep your eyes peeled for the Billabong Grom Series event near you:

Billabong Grom Series Event Two – 16th – 17th February Whangamata
Billabong Grom Series Event Three – 5th - 6th April Piha Beach, Auckland

For more information on the series please contact Ben Kennings at Surfing New Zealand on 021 2278732 or email  Alternatively contact Scott Casey at Billabong on 021 728234 or email

The Billabong Grom Series is brought to you by Billabong, Oceanbridge, Nickelodeon, Coke, Panasonic, Von Vipper and Kustom, NZ Surfing Magazine and Girlfriend Magazine. Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by Corona, Hyundai, SPARC & Smokefree.



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