The first event of the Coromandel Regional Scholastic Surfing Champs was held at Whangamata on Sunday. The surf was good with a small 1.0m swell and offshore winds. Thirty surfers from throughout the region competed in divisions ranging from Under 14 through to Under 18 for both boys and girls. As a bonus, an Under 12s Division was contested with all the local groms excited to get the chance to compete, most for the first time.
The hardest fought division was the Under 16 Boys Division which was won by Katikati College surfer Thomas Carter over Whangamata’s Dylan Preston. Jay Piper – Healion (MBAS) placed third in the final with Bayley Easton – Ward (Katikati College) in fourth.
Winners of other divisions included Ayrton Yarrell (Katikati College) in the Under 18 Boys, Ben Smith (MBAS) in the Under 14 Boys and Jayde Hanner (WAS) in the Under 14 Girls Division.
An additional division comprising the Under 12s was added to the schedule. Although not officially part of the scholastic programme, seven hardy groms as young as seven hit the water and had a blast after waiting all day for their final. Sean Smith of Hot Water Beach claimed the victory over Ben Milne and Otis Baxter both of Whangamata in third and fourth respectively.
At the conclusion of the tri series, a twelve person team will be selected to compete at the National Scholastic Championships being held at Gisborne from the 3rd – 7th October.
Coromandel Regional Scholastics Event 1 – Whangamata.
Under 18 Boys
1st – Ayrton Yarrell (Katikati College)
2nd Atawhai Cahteris (MBAS)
Under 16 Boys
1st – Thomas Carter (Katikati College)
2nd – Dylan Preston (WAS)
3rd – Jay Piper – Healion (MBAS)
4th – Bayley Easton – Ward (Katikati College)
Under 14 Boys
1st – Ben Smith (MBAS)
2nd – Sam Kiznett (WAS)
3rd – Ban Wharton (MBAS)
4th – Sam Baxter (WAS)
Under 14 Girls
1st Jayde Hanner (WAS)
2nd – Vita Rowe – Smith (Thames College)
Bonus Under 12 Division (not part of the scholastics)
1st – Sean Smith (MBAS)
2nd – Ben Milne (WAS)
3rd – Otis Baxter (WAS)
4th – India Kennings (Opoutere)
5th Coby Cox (WAS)
6th Taj Miller (WAS)
7th Daniel Cox (WAS)
The next event will be held at either Hot Water Beach or Whangapoua on the 24th July. The final event is being held at Waihi Beach on the 14th August.