The Australian Surf Festival shuffled 20-minutes north to the golden shores of Emerald Beach to kick off the elder divisions in the Australian Surfmasters Titles today.
2014 NSW Champion Christian Cook (Dee Why, NSW) kicked the morning off with a standout performance in the Over-35 Men. The Northern Beaches surfer posted the highest heat total of the event thus far, 18.35 (out of a possible 20 points). Cook, who took out the HIF NSW Surfmasters Titles presented by Moby's Beachside Retreat at South Boomerang Beach earlier this year, performed a series of mammoth backside hooks to be rewarded with the healthy scoreline and book his spot into the second round, hence bypassing the requalification rounds.
Dave Reardon-Smith (Bli Bli, Qld) used his innovative repertoire to his advantage when he executed a combination of tail-free and aerial-esque turns to post a solid 17.35 heat total. Reardon-Smith’s impressive performance effectively left his fell competitors battling for second position after his aforementioned score had them searching for two-wave totals to move into first position.
Other Over-35 Men’s winners included former World Championship Tour surfer Jake Paterson (Yallingup, WA) and former ISA World Masters Games competitor Mark Richardson (Palm Beach, Qld) who both posted heat totals in excess of 15 points.
Coincidentally, Richardson also took out his Over-40 Men’s heat with the exact same 16.50 heat total that allowed him to win his Over-35 Men’s heat.
Paul Paterson (City Beach, WA) joined his brother Jake in the winner’s circle successfully taking out his first Over-40 Men’s heat. Paterson’s silky smooth frontside turns were enough for him to lock in a 14.50 heat total.
Other round one Over-40s Men’s winners included local standout Scott Schindler (Sawtell, NSW) and NSW Surfmasters Titles runner-up Marcus Davidson (Shelly Beach, NSW).
Former Australian Champion Rod Baldwin (Copacabana, NSW) put on the same excellent performances, which has seen him win a handful of past titles when he surfed in the first round of the Over-45 and Over-50 Men. Baldwin managed to lock in dual heat wins with totals in excess of 15 points.
The FCS Performer Of The Day Awards were handed to Christian Cook for his previously mentioned performance in the Over-35 Men as well as Clive Stinton (Moffatt Beach, Qld) for posting an impressive 16.50 heat score in his Over-50 Men’s heat. Both surfers received an FCS legrope and tailpad for their efforts.
Coffs Harbour is home to a number of great beach break options that work in a variety of wind and swell conditions. The main base for the event will be Park Beach which is located north east of the Coffs Harbour CBD. The event is fully mobile in the Coffs Harbour region with numerous beach break options which include Park Beach, Macauley’s Beach, Diggers Beach, Jetty Beach, Gallows, Arrawarra Beach, Mulloway Beach, Woolgoolga Beach, Emerald Beach and Sapphire Beach.
A hotline – 0458 247 212 – is operating for the festival which will feature a recorded message updated at 6:45am each morning with the confirmed daily schedule and contest venue.
Live results and daily news will be updated at www.australiansurffestival.com.
The 2014 Australian Surf Festival is proudly supported by the NSW Government through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW. The event is also proudly supported by Coffs Harbour City Council, Coffs Coast Tourism, Wahu, The Hoey Moey, Nikon, Toyota, Pacific Longboarder, FCS, Australian Institute of Sport, Surfing NSW and Surfing Australia.