Aussies dominate at Tay St

Australian surfer Josh Constable has secured a hat-trick of wins on the New Zealand Hyundai Pro Longboard Tour after winning his third consecutive event at Mount Maunganui at the weekend.
A day of near-perfect waves and fine weather greeted surfers for the final day of the event on Sunday with clean, head-high 1m waves mainly fanned by offshore winds.

In the open men’s division final, Josh managed to secure two top-scoring waves in the first five minutes leaving the other surfers needing a combination of scores to catch up.
“I wanted to capitalise while the conditions were really nice,” he said of his 17.90 point heat total.
In the battle for the minor placings, Thomas Kibblewhite held second place with long hang-10s and a big reo to finish on one wave scoring a total of 13.80 out of a possible 20 points. However, he was pipped in the last minute by American surfer Taylor Jensen who secured an 8.0 out of 10 late to finish with a heat total of 15.4 and second place.
Mount Maunganui surfer Ant McColl also surfed well securing an 11.5 point total heat, but that was not enough against the international challenge and he finished fourth.
Earlier, the day began with tightly contested semifinals that saw Thomas Kibblewhite and Ant McColl defeat last year’s tour champion Dylan Barnfield from Ohope and Kane Rogers from Auckland.
In the second semi-final, Taylor Jensen showed his winning form with long nose rides, big turns and air-drop floaters to progress alongside Josh Constable who together eliminated Phil Morris from Auckland and Kelly Ryan from Gisborne.
In the other divisions, Brian Young from Orewa took the win in the last minutes of the over 40 men’s division pushing Mount Maunganui surfer Eric Burggraaf into second.

Brian says he started the final badly after following his nephew, Thomas Kibblewhite, over to a more secluded right-handed to the north of the main peak. But he was unable to get a wave there and had to paddle down the beach to the more consistent spot where he picked up some great waves to beat Eric, Steve Tyro from Raglan and Mal BradyMount Maunganui.
Brian has now won three from three events in the over 40 men’s division to cement his place at the top.
In the under-18 boys’ division, Hone Douglas from Whakatane showed his style on a couple of nice right-hand runners.

The all Bay of Plenty final was a familiar interchange, but Douglas says it was great to win one at Mount Maunganui over opponents Joe Stewart, Matt Craig and Blake Barnfield.

The busy day also included a crowd-pleasing ‘King of the Waves’ stand up paddle boarding surf race.

 The 22 competitors took part in the 3km race, completing three laps of the M-shaped course which tested their wave knowledge and paddle skills.
The event was won by Armie Armstrong from Raglan, who says the race was really exciting through the 1m waves.

Stand-up surfer Daniel Kereopa, also from Raglan, was nearly a casualty in the race, falling on his board, but he managed to recover to take the stand up paddleboard division final. Up against hard competition, Daniel says his strategy was to put pressure on the other guys and catch some waves at the start and it paid off as he pushed past Shayne Baxter from Christchurch, Karl Aarsen from Whangamata and Sean Hovell from Gisborne.
In the over 50 men’s division, winner Mike Thomson from Raglan says he struggled to catch the waves on the shifty beach break, but found a couple of longer rides late in the heat.

“The waves were a bit of a tease,” he says of his win over Grant Cochrane from Christchurch, David Storck from Auckland and Rupert Newbold from Whangarei.
In the women’s division, Australian Nava Young was able to do what her partner Jensen was unable to, taking the win off fellow Australian Georgia Young in second with Kiwis Shelley Jones from Auckland in third and Anna Gooding from Mount Maunganui in fourth.

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