by Alice Wilson For the last two months many surfers had no option but to remain dry. The pancake-flat oceans had not allowed even the most desperate of us to indulge in a knee-high grovel. The majority of the east coast had been suffering from an unusual lack of swell for what seemed to drag on for an eternity. The days were long and the countless surf checks left us deflated, wondering if we needed to find a new hobby. There was little hope for our August competition, however luck was on our side as there were surfable lumps rolling in to Kianga beach all day long. Although small, the 1-2 foot lefts and rights trickled in consistently allowing scoring potential throughout the day.
Dean Lange had his sizzle on and was flipping patties on the BBQ before the first heat of the day even started. Dean was later relieved from the hot plate duties by Mr Dan Baltis, donning the apron and making sure the sausages stayed saucy. Megan Hoar was all over the baked goods stall and making sure all the kiddlets enjoyed their free fruit. Robby Ennik was staying dry after shoulder surgery so was put to work, committing to the whole day in the judging tent and flying the drone to search the lineup for any lurking men in grey suits.
90s punk rock blared from the speakers much to the delight of the old salty rockers in the judging tent and after finishing their designated task of setting up for the day, the Over 45 men were first to enter the briny. In the second heat, Luke Waters was quick off the mark as he took off on a 2.5 foot set wave before the starter buzzer had even finished ringing - he sped down the line and finished with a well timed reentry for a sizzling 6.37 points. Waters then put further heat on rival Andrew Johnson with a second 5 point wave. As these parrots paddled amicably over the top of each other, expletives were likely exchanged as Waters took of on a tactical “front side pig dog” stance to block Johnson from taking the next wave. Johnson was patient however and found a 6.83 point ride on his backside, enough to push him through to the final. Ian Dawson was sitting a little deep for the speed of the small waves and got stuck behind the foam. Waters celebrated with a 7.87 point ride and a back up of 5.03 to take out the final.
The under 14 Boys had to throw their weight around as they generated speed and bounced their way into shore.Tristan Heinemann had ants in his pants with a wave count of 12 in the 20 minute heat. Finn Banks was breathing down Heinemann's neck all heat but managed to make it through to the final, knocking out Heinemann. Oscar Jackson won his heat by a large margin, milking his waves until he finished in ankle deep water, stepping off on the sand. A humungous whale displayed its approval of Jackson’s commitment as it made a full body breach and belly flop behind the breakers. In the second heat Sam Harris managed 4 turns to the beach on his first wave to score 5.33 points with a backup later of 5.17. It was Tom Ireson who had us in stitches, surfing half the heat with a metre of seaweed trailing from the back of his wetsuit and claiming a reentry with a hulk-like claim - the lad was awarded with cheers for his entertainment and stoke! The final was filled with four goofy footers. Oscar Jackson stole the show with his variety, a fluster of floaters, cutbacks, vertical reentries and fin releases finishing with a notable heat total of 14.65 points!
Both heats of the Under 18 boys were loaded with talent. Hamish White rotated his board 180 degrees back to the foam and stuck the landing on a sandy end section attack to score 5.93 points. Mr patient, Matt Driscoll won his heat with a 4 turn wave with a cracking hit at the first section. Valentino Guseli linked his turns in the way only a world champion can to win his heat convincingly. The final was a little closer with Guseli taking the win over Driscoll by a nail biting 0.79 of a point.
5 fierce young ladies battled it out in a straight final for the Under 18 girls. They were blessed with some bigger sets of clean A frames straight off the buzzer. Eaton sisters Marley and Pearl wasted no time splitting the peaks. However it was Ruby Davis who finished on top, scoring massive points on a backside snap as she obliterated the lip for a solid 5 point ride.
The Open Men division was a straight final. Lincoln Dell got busy with a high wave count putting the heat on reigning champ Matt Hoar. Hoar splashed Dell playfully as Dell whipped past him on a smoker. Hamish Ramsey picked the waves of the heat, sticking a nice critical backside re-entry for 4 points. Hoar threw spray on a few fast down the line lip touches and sealed the deal with an end section floater for 7 points. This quickly became his backup score as he charged along a second left - a few speedy check turns and finishing with a straight air, collecting a cheer and a searing 7.4 points. Cameron Ryan quietly belly boarded his way to frustration in the small, weak waves.
The Longboard division had to be quick on their feet. Better late than never, Brent Gresty barely had time to doff his soccer shoes and don his rash vest as he sprinted down the beach to join his fellow longboarders after the heat had commenced. Adrian Eaton managed an array of cross steps, switchfoot and backwards surfing, while Simone Ballerina Brown scored well with cutbacks and commitment to the shallow water reentries, narrowly avoiding a sandy demise. Patrick Gunn took home the bacon as he carved lines along the waves and wowed us with some nose rides and cutbacks.
The Under 13 Assisted Groms demanded respect once again as they floated out the back with their outboard motors primed and ready to push them on. There were some solid waves with fast steep sections for those willing to take them. Zara Dawson showed some promising style with her backside surfing and Asher Hoar generating his own speed as he pumped down the line into shore. Jake Mullens scored a whopping 8 points on a wave for some speedy cutbacks and an end section obliteration on the shorebreak. When he came in and saw his score he sprinted back down the back hooting and cheering with delight to high five family members sitting on the bank. Flinder Black had it in the sack, as he utilised the whole wave face for some impressive carves all the way to first place. Each month we see these groms demonstrating new skills in the water, their improvement is outstanding!
The Under 8s had to muscle their way through the lineup as they surfed alongside the Under 14 boys. Mali Brown zoomed down the face of a set wave and brother Sandy Brown was consistently to his feet on the inside bank. Spike Gunn stole the show, 6 years old and out the back with the big boys. As his father called him on and pushed him onto a wave all other surfers pulled off to left Spike charge down the face of an almost double overhead bomb which he rode all the way into shore. The whole beach was cheering as he collected an excellent score of 9 points.
The Open Women had a straight final 4 fine lady frothers. Melissa Hoar seemed to be in the right spot at the right time picking off countless long waves to the beach. Nina Lange went for quality of waves, not quantity, finishing in second place. Alice Mood goofy footed her way to first place with a few cutbacks and committed re-entries on the shore break.
Wave of the Day was a tie between one of the club’s most seasoned surfers, Matt Hoar, and 6 year old rookie, Spike Gunn.
Under 8s - Spike Gunn
Under 13s - Flinder Black
Under 14 boys - Oscar Jackson
Under 18 boys - Valentino Guseli
Over 45 men - Luke Waters
Open mens - Matt Hoar
Under 18 girls - Marley Eaton
Open women - Alice Mood
Longboards - Patrick Gunn
The Daniel ‘Derbo’ Campbell memorial was held in June - all reports painted a sunny winter’s day with good sized waves and top notch vibes. Prizes of skateboards were won by happy grommies. There were Dress ups and novelty surfing. Costume ideas were endless: motorbike riders, wigs, tutus and pieces of pizza - all in honour of the vibrant soul of the late Daniel Campbell.
Many of our club members have been busy gallivanting up and down the east coast proudly representing Dalmeny Boardriders at regional and state level. Masters Andrew Johnson and Matt Hoar are heading to Port Macquarie in August to represent New South Wales in the Australian Masters Shortboard Titles. Best of luck to all!
Next competition: Sunday 3rd September (Father’s day)
Above: Marley Eaton attacking the lip