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Kiwi Longboarders Finish Eleventh at World Championships

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The New Zealand Longboard Team has finished eleventh at the ISA World Longboard Championship completed in China overnight (Thursday 25th January).

USA ran away with the gold medal followed by Peru, Brazil and Hawaii.  Hawaii’s Kai Sallas claimed the gold medal in the Open Men’s Division and Tory Gilkerson (USA) the gold in the women’s division.

Piha surfer Zen Wallis was the last Kiwi to fall on the penultimate day of the event finishing in equal 16th place – the highest of the four-person New Zealand Team.

“Overall I’m happy with this result although I know I could have done better” said the two-time team member.  “It is an improvement on 19th from the last event in 2013, and coming away from this I know I can really improve my longboarding” added Wallis.

In his last heat Wallis made a few critical errors that put him behind and having to play catch up in the small 0.5m waves on Hainan Island.

“I didn’t need a big score and got the wave I needed 15 seconds after the hooter so there were some valuable lessons learned in that heat and throughout the event.”

“I’ve learned heaps over here surfing with the world’s best, the waves here, the judges and from myself. Seeing how the best of the best surf, the techniques they use, and what is rewarded with the highest scores.”

The New Zealand team included Sasha Brownlie (Auck) and Gabi Paul (Piha), both finishing in 17th equal and Christchurch surfer Hugh Ritchie who finished 31st.

The New Zealand Team will return to New Zealand this weekend with the next national event being the Barrett Homes New Zealand Longboard and SUP Open held at Papamoa Beach on the 17-18 February followed by the Ray White Duke Festival of Surfing in Christchurch on the 16-18 March.

Please see below for final results from the 2018 ISA World Longboard Championship completed at Riyue Bay, Wanning, China from the 19th – 25th January.

1, USA, 2928
2, Peru, 2305
3, Hawaii, 2285
4, Brazil, 2043
5, England, 2025
6, Australia, 2008
7, Japan, 1968
8, Argentina, 1760
9, Portugal, 1705
10, South Africa, 1678
11, New Zealand, 1543

Men’s Longboard Repechage Round 4
Heat 3
Ben Skinner, ENG, 17.53, 1, Lucas Garrido Lecca, PER, 12.33, 2, Declan Wyton, AUS, 11.53, 3, Zen Wallis, NZL, 8.93, 4

Men’s Longboard Final
Kai Sallas, HAW, 19.04, 1, Benoit Clemente, PER, 16.73, 2, Tony Silvagni, USA, 16.7, 3, Kevin Skvarna, USA, 16.17, 4

Women’s Longboard Final
Tory Gilkerson, USA, 16.3, 1, Chloe Calmon, BRA, 15.27, 2, Honolua Blomfield, HAW, 13.34, 3, Natsumi Taoka, JPN, 12.9, 4

The ISA World Longboard Championship is usually an annual event but has not been held since 2013.  New Zealand placed 11th at the most recent edition of the event.

Further Information
For further information on the New Zealand Longboard Team please contact Surfing New Zealand’s Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.


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