South Africa’s top three female surfers dominated the Surfing South Africa Women’s Pro when they won six titles between them in the events held simultaneously at Long Beach Kommetjie, Kitchen Windows in Jeffreys Bay and the Bay of Plenty in Durban yesterday.
Tanika Hoffman (Clifton) showed her class in winning both the Women’s and Under 20 divisions in Cape Town, producing 8 and 9 point scores on her way to victory, while Bianca Buitendag and Sarah Baum did likewise in Jeffreys Bay and Durban respectively. All three surfers have recently returned from campaigns abroad and their experience showed in these local Pro Surf Tour (PST) events for women.
Danielle Johnson (Muizenberg) came second to Hoffman in both the Women’s and Under 20 finals. Third in the women’s division in small windblown Long Beach surf was Tarryn Chudleigh with fellow Kommetjie surfer Simone Robb in fourth. Robb will be leaving for China soon where she and Tara Hossack are the two South Africans in the Swatch International Longboard Championships.
Up and coming Nina Woermann (Kenilworth) secured third spot behind Hoffman and Johnson in the Under 20 Final with Holly Armstrong (Scarborough) fourth.
The under 16 title at Long Beach went the way of talented Anoush Zakarian (Melkbosstrand). Ruth Armstrong (Scarborough) was second, Sam Sutton (Constantia) came third and Caitlin October (Noordhoek) was fourth. Kira Bester, the only rookie to compete in the event, surfed in the Under 16 final.
Strong winds made conditions tough at Kitchen Windows in J-Bay but star of the show, Buitendag (George), still managed to produce a couple of 8 point rides as she coasted to victory in the Women’s and Under 20 finals. Newly crowned SA Under 17 Champion Gina Smith beat her sister Emma into third place in the Women’s final with 11 year old Kai Woolf taking fourth spot. All three girls are from Jeffreys Bay.
Emma Smith was second to Buitendag in the Under 20 Division with Robyn van der Merwe and Tahra Uren (both Jeffrey’s Bay) third and fourth respectively
Honours in the Under 16 Final went to Britney Linder (PE) who edged SA under 15 Champion Crystal Hulett (St Francis Bay) into second spot. Inge McClaren (East London) was third with Tahra Uren taking fourth.
Grietjie Burger (Jeffreys Bay), Kia Fenton (PE) and Kirsty McGillivray (PE) finished in that order in the Rookies final.
Poor weather did not detract from the surfing in the Durban edition of the Women’s Pro, especially as the surf was in the five foot mark for most of the day. Sarah Baum (Athlone Park) used all her experience to win both the Women’s and Under 20 divisions and pocketed R2 000 for her efforts.
The runner up in the final was South Africa’s most decorated female surfer Heather Clark (Port Shepstone). Clark relegated SA under 20 Champion Heidi Palmboom (Bluff) to third spot while 2012 SA Junior team member Nicole Pallet (Durban) took fourth.
Pallet was runner up to Baum in the Under 20 Final where Teal Hogg (Durban) came third and Chanelle Botha (Warner Beach) was fourth.
Hogg took the Under 16 title with Botha ending second. Jade Mets and Cana Foster (both Durban) came third and fourth respectively. The Rookie title was won by tiny Gabi Lailvaux with Kelly Medley second, Courtney Sim third, Janine Finnegan fourth and Amber van Wyk fifth. All the girls are from Durban.
The second Women’s Pro is scheduled for November 25th and SSA has announced that all the finalists in the event completed on Sunday will receive free entry into the contest.