2012 BSUPA Paddlesurf Nationals Watergate bay

We took a trip down to Watergate Bay last weekend to compete in the British Stand Paddlesurf Association National for surf and distance. Matt Argyle, Holly, Neal Gent, Emile Kott and I were all entered in the heats. The draw had already been made during the week so it was up to the forecast to deliver the goods. Neal and Emile pulled out before they got to the comp due to injury and illness.

Holly myself and Matt had arrived there Thursday morning as the wind picked up by the end of the day it was 25 knots on shore – we made it out the back for some punishing paddle surfing and not much riding. Friday I had some coaching to do with Gareth Grant again in 25 knots which was not ideal paddlesurfing conditions.

Holly and Matt made it out the back on Friday evening when there was some huge sets rolling in – it was still windy but have to say it was the biggest surf Holly has been out in and she didn’t back off. Matt reckoned he had the biggest hold down in 15 years of surfing!

 Over the comp weekend the conditions on Saturday were tough still very windy with loads of foamy white water and not many gaps between sets – the 20 minute heats were punishing for competitors 19 minutes of paddling out with a very short ride if you were lucky. I had pulled out the comp due to my back but Matt good through 3 heats of 20 minutes and retired out just before the last 3 heats. Holly’s heats were postponed until the Sunday.

There was some very solid paddlesurfers out over the 2 days very impressed with Aaron Rowe who certainly looks set for the No1 spot in the near future, Jim Richardson was really on fire, Defending champion Gareth Grant rode some very impressive waves during the event, Andre the eventual winner was Mr consistent all the way through the event. Matt Smith had an epic heat and was showing some full on power surfing. There is a very high standard of riding at the event making the competition much tougher this year.

On Sunday morning the Battle of the paddle was run in what looked perfect windless surf –Charlie Grey was the eventual winner with Ryan James and Mark “da bull” Slater close on his heels. Holly’s heat with ladies started as the wind picked up again –she was knocked out of the first round and was frustrated with the judging results –but she still managed to be junior national champion so we will see what happens next year.

Good job for Rich Marsh and his team for running the event.

RESULTS: Mens Open Surf
• 1st Andre Le Geyt
• 2nd Jim Richardson
• 3rd Arron Rowe
• 4th Titou Minster
Womens Open Surf
• 1st Maria Buchanan
• 2nd Abigal Barker Smith
• 3rd Kath Jones
• 4th Mi Richardson

Jnr Boys Surf
• 1st Arron Rowe
• 2nd Ollie Laddiman
• 3rd Louie Harrow

Jnr Girls Surf
• 1st Holly Basset

Battle of the Paddle – Men’s 12’6″ Class
• 1st Charlie Grey
• 2nd Ryan James
• 3rd Oliver Shilton

Battle of the Paddle – Mens 14′ Class
• 1st Matt Smith
• 2nd Andrew Peterson
• 3rd Tim Rowe

Battle of the Paddle – Women
• 1st Maria Buchanan
• 2nd Lizzie Bird

Rapanui Wave Expression Session
• 1st Gareth Grant
• 2nd Matt Thomas
• 3rd Will Rogers
• 4th Jim Richardson

2012 Watergate Bay Waterman
• Andre le Geyt

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