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New Wave Primary Schools interrupted by a pod of orcas


Hone Douglas : photo Grimson

New Wave Primary Schools

Surfing New Zealand
Makorori Beach, Gisborne New Zealand
17 - 18 November 2007

Orcas Holt Play at Primary Schools

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 19 November, 2007 : - - A pod of Orca whales cruised the Gisborne coastline Sunday and swum right through the New Wave Primary School Surfing Championships being held at Makorori Beach.  Their presence put a hold on the event for at least an hour until it was safe to go back the water once they had moved out to sea. 

Having earlier been warned of the pod of five to six whales it wasn’t until a 1.5m high dorsal fin broke the surface of the line up at a fast pace that everyone knew they were in the vicinity.  A mere 30m separated the whales from the four contestants in the water and within no time the competing surfers were on the next wave safely heading to the shore. 

The whales then proceeded to show everyone how to surf the waves moving at pace through the line up to the hooting and hollering of hundreds on the beach.  Once the whales finally moved up the coast the event resumed with eight champions being crowned along with Gisborne’s Illminster School who took out the teams title for the second year running.

Piha’s Tane Wallis defended his title in the boys championship division after scoring 14.67 to win the final in a typically calculated performance.  Wallis posted his best scores on his last two rides of the final with a 6.67 and then an 8.0 to comfortably win.  He put everything on the line when riding his best wave ‘busting his fins free’ on his forehand. 

Ben Poulter (Rag) placed second in the final after surfing to an explosive 7.0 point ride and 11.27 heat total.  With the small 0.50m – 0.75m surf, Poulter found it hard to find the bigger more powerful waves to get a flow on and secure another high scoring ride. 

Dune Kennings (Piha) started the final hot and was leading early but could not match the power of his older counterparts finishing in third scoring 10.57.  Marcelino Botin (Auck) placed a credible fourth after dominating many of the earlier rounds with some great surfing.

In the girls championship final it was Ella Williams (WGM) that was too good for the whole field including her close rival Jayda Fitzharris (Gis).  Following the lead of Wallis, Williams scored 14.40 as her total heat score after surfing some great lefthanders on her backhand and in doing so, defended her 2006 title.  Fitzharris placed second with a heat score of 7.10 with Madison Atkins (Whaka) in third and Alex Potter in fourth.  

The plate divisions of the boys and girls stand up offered the chance for a number of surfers to get used to the competitive arena and once these young surfers had competed in a few heats and rid themselves of nerves, their real ability shone through and it was great to see a number of amped new faces. 

Local boy Duncan Milne took out the boys plate final followed by Jordan Griffin (Mnt), Jonathan Hyndman (Mnt) and Kane Stewart (Waihi Beach) finishing second trough fourth respectively.  In the girls plate, Whakatane surfer Ella Barnfield surfed to victory ahead of the Gisborne trio of Bex Story, Marilize Venter and Maddie Hewatson who finished in that order.

Mount Maunganui’s Jonathan Hyndman won the boys bodyboard division with a great 12.43 heat total to easily outpoint runner up Finn Jacobson (Mnt), Kalim Shaw (Gis) and Connor Andrews (Gis).  Gisborne surfer Bianca Destounis won a close fought battle with fellow Gisborne surfer Hannah Kohn to win the girls bodyboard.  Destounis scored 11.10 to Kohn’s 10.67 who was closely followed by Freya Robinson (Gis) who scored 9.10 with Ashlee Brown (Gis) in fourth.

Kurt Giesler picked up Gisborne’s third win of the event when he won the boys kneeboard.  He scored 11.50 including a 6.67 on one of his last waves of the heat to take out the event.  Fellow Gisborne surfers filled the minor placings with Henry Ellingham in second and Jarrod Fitzgerald in third.

Boys Championship Finals
Tane Wallis (Piha), 1,
Ben Poulter (Rag), 2,
Dune Kennings (Whmata), 3,
Marcelino Botin (Auck), 4

Boys Plate Division Finals
Duncan Milne (Gis),
Jonathan Hyndman (Mnt),
Jordan Griffin (Mnt),
Kane Stewart (Waihi Beach)

Girls Championship Finals
Ella Williams (Whmata), 1,
Jayda Martin-Fitzharris (Gis), 2,
Madison Atkins (Whaka), 3,
Alex Potter (Gis), 4

Girls Plate Division Finals
Ella Barnfield (Whaka), 1,
Bex Story (Gis), 2,
Eilish Robinson (Gis), 3,
Marilize Venter (Gis), 4

Girls Bodyboard Final
Bianca Destounis (Gis), 1,
Lydia Walsh (Tara), 2,
Emma Croton (Gis), 3,
Ashlee Brown (Gis), 4

Girls Kneeboard Final
Abergale Weir (Tara), 1,
Lydia Walsh (Tara), 2,
Emma Croton (Gis), 3,
Sophia Cooksley (Tara), 4

Boys Bodyboard Final
John Hyndman (Gis), 1,
Finn Jacobson (TGA), 2,
Kalim Shaw (Gis), 3,
Connor Andrews, 4 

Boys Kneeboard Final
Kurt Giesler (Gis), 1,
Henry Ellingham (Gis), 2,
Jarrod Fitzgerald (Gis), 3,
Taylor Louie (Piha), N/S

Generous support from New Wave, Health Sponsorship Council and Gisborne Boardriders Club has made this event possible. Surfing New Zealand are proudly partnered by Corona, Vodafone, Hyundai, SPARC & Smokefree.

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Ben Kennings

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