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Wallis Wins South Island Championships, Paerata Takes Series Lead

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Piha surfer Zen Wallis has claimed his first ever win in the New Zealand Surf Series winning the Emerson’s South Island Surfing Championships held at St Clair Beach, Dunedin today (Sunday April 1).

The result sees the 26-year-old surfer jump to third on the overall rankings with today’s runner-up Elliot Paerata – Reid (Piha) overtaking National Champion Ricardo Christie (Gis) for the number one position after two of six events.

Tegen Bishop (Chch) also won her first Open Women’s Division event today and in doing so rose to number two on the rankings behind National Champion Raiha Ensor (Mnt) who retains the number one spot after her win in January.

The final day of the event dawned with the Southern Ocean roaring into life and a solid 1.5m – 2.0m swell making St Clair Beach look more like a snowboarding arena.

Rain initially threatened to dampen the spirits of the hardy souls who had forgotten about daylight saving and were up free-surfing by dawn. However, the rain held off, the sun came out and the wind abated.  The judges were out of the campers and back in the official’s tent on the seawall edge.  The weather also attracted a large crowd along the esplanade who enjoyed some spectacular surfing.

Today’s Open Men’s Division Final was closely contested over 25 minutes in the solid surf.  Wallis narrowly took the victory over Paerata – Reid posting 14.17 points out of a possible 20 to Paerata – Reid’s 13.84.  Christchurch surfer Sam Sands placed third in the final ahead of Harrison Whiteside in fourth, both surfers battling it out for the minor placings, unable to wind the good quality waves like their opponents.

Earlier in the day, Paerata – Reid had surfed to the only perfect ten point ride in the Quarterfinals as he belted out four huge blindingly critical turns.  The tough conditions saw some early casualties that put paid to another local title when, in the Quarterfinals, local hopefuls Elliott Brown and JC Susan were eliminated from the event.

The Open Women’s Division Final went out in deteriorating conditions on the high tide with a wicked easterly wind chopping up the surf along with the backwash providing some entertaining wipe outs. Tegen Bishop (Chch) took the title over Britt Kindred (Mur) in second, the points differential being a meagre 0.30 points.  Estella Hungerford (Chch) finished in third with Hayley Coakes (Dun) in fourth.

The longboarders opted to surf the point with solid 2.0m lefthanders working nicely.  New Zealand longboarding teammates Zen Wallis (Piha) and Hugh Ritchie (Chch) battled it out in the huge conditions with Ritchie taking the win from Wallis, with Ben Winmill (Nel) and Seb Johnson (Chch) finishing in third and fourth respectively.

The Under 20 Girls Division final was totally dominated by Britt Kindred (Mur) with her powerful backhand cutbacks.  Local lass Shani Ayson finished in second and Janee Armstrong (Chch) in third.  Kindred likened the conditions “surfing in a washing machine”.

The Under 20 Boy’s Division final was an all Christchurch affair with outstanding surfing from all four competitors that saw the placings changing right up until the last minute.  Jack Wilson finally took the win with a heat score of 12.0 points in a very close final with two late rides to finish ahead of Sam Sands on 10.8, Thomas Harcourt on 10.7 and Moss Thompson on 10.2 points, unable to find a decent backup wave.

The Under 18 Boys showed form in the advancing high tide. The ‘channel lefts’ were working providing some great surfing for the spectators.  Myka Black (Chch), the young 14-year-old from Christchurch, took out the final with a heat score of 13.6 points followed closely by North Wai club mate Neko Tohiariki in second scoring of 13.2 points.  Conor McLennan (Chch), the current Under 18 Boys National Champion simply couldn’t pull a high scoring wave out of the ocean placing third with local lad, and day two standout, Jack McLeod finishing in fourth.

Tegen Bishop took her second victory of the day in the Under 18 Women’s Division.  Local surfer, 14-year-old Anika Ayson, showed guts to claim second place, making the most of her local knowledge and hugging the channel for some good left handers.  Eve Findlay from the West Coast finished in third with another local Jaya Rearden in fourth.

Surfers in the Under 14 Girls Division stepped up in some ugly surf.  Taking the win was Ava Henderson from Christchurch with Liv Haysom from Piha second and Cousins Leah Wilson and 11-year-old Misha Peyroux third and fourth respectively.

The Under 14 boys showed stamina and strength in the backwash doing some serious paddling, James Millar (Chch) taking it out from team mate Dara O’Malley (Chch) with Kaikoura’s Reuben Lyons third and Jack McKenzie (Chch) in fourth.

The Under 16 Girls Division was dominated by Anna Brock (Mnt).  However, Estella Hungerford came from behind in the dying minutes to take the lead and ultimately the win.  Brock finished in second with Liv Haysom (Piha) in third and Ava Henderson (Chch) fourth.

The Under 16 Boys was convincingly taken out by Whangarei’s Tom Robinson, the young goofy footer getting revenge for being knocked out in the Semifinals of the Under 18 Boys Division.  Myka Black could claim his second title of the weekend, finishing in second with Neko Tohiariki (Chch) third and Ruben Peyroux (Dun) in fourth.

The Senior Women was dominated by local lass Tash Civil surfing at her home break and getting some absolute bombs with South Coast Boardriders teammate Hayley Coakes coming second.  Lucy Te Moananui (Kaik) started the heat well but didn’t get a back-up wave placing third with Pana Leontiadu (WC) coming fourth.

The SUP men put on a show of outstanding surfing in ugly backwash with Kaikoura surf legend Al Te Moananui taking it out from Mark Stevenson (Mnt) who took a well-deserved break from photographing the event.

The Over 45 Men’s Division was the last event of the day in horrendous high tide off shore conditions.  A final of local surfers was taken out by Michael McNally with Simon Brennan in second, Richard Ayson in third and Rob Emmet finishing in fourth.

And that’s a wrap for the 2018 Emerson’s South Island Surfing Championships.  The solid crowd of spectators gathered at the Esplanade were treated with some spectacular surfing with rumours running rife that Ed Sheeran was in the crowd. The crew again retired to the comfortable surrounds of the South Coast Boardriders clubrooms for prize giving and the newly brewed Emerson’s Shark Bell.

The three day event was hosted by South Coast Boardriders and was dual sanctioned by Surfing New Zealand and the South Island Surfing Association.  The event featured 16 divisions ranging from Open Men and Women through to Under 14 Boys and Girls, Longboard, Seniors and Stand Up Paddleboard.

Please see below for final results from the Emerson’s South Island Surfing Championships completed at St Clair Beach, Dunedin today (Sunday 1 April).

Open Men’s Division Final
Zen Wallis (Piha), 14.17, 1, Elliot Paerata Reid (Piha), 13.83, 2, Sam Sands (Chch), 8.87, 3, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 4.4, 4

Open Women’s Division Final
Tegen Bishop (Chch), 10.1, 1, Britt Kindred (Mur), 9.8, 2, Estella Hungerford (Chch), 9.2, 3, Hayley Coakes (Dun), 6.9, 4

Over 30 Men’s Division
Luke Murphy (Dun), 11.5, 1, Josh Thickpenny (Dun), 7.9, 2, Dane Robertson (Dun), 7.4, 3, Jamie Civil (Dun), 6.97, 4

Over 30 Women’s Division
Natasha Civil (Dun), 13, 1, Hayley Coakes (Dun), 9.03, 2, Lucy Te Moananui (Kaik), 5, 3, Pana Leontiadu (WC), 4.17, 4

Over 45 Men’s Division
Michael McNally (Dun), 11.7, 1, Simon Brennan (Dun), 9.7, 2, Richard Ayson (Dun), 6.03, 3, Rob Emett (Dun), 2.33, 4

Men’s Longboard Division
Hugh Ritchie (Chch), 13.8, 1, Zen Wallis (Piha), 10.5, 2, Ben Winmill (Nel), 7.03, 3, Seb Johnson (Chch), 6.4, 4

Men’s SUP Division
Alan Te Moananui (Kaik), 14.2, 1, Mark Stevenson (Dun), 12, 2, Steev Peyroux (Dun), 9.9, 3, Dion Findlay (WC), 5.27, 4

Under 20 Boys Division
Jack Wilson (Chch), 12, 1, Sam Sands (Chch), 10.8, 2, Moss Thompson (Chch), 10.7, 3, Thomas Harcourt (Chch), 10.2, 4

Under 20 Girls Division
Britt Kindred (Mur), 11.2, 1, Shani Ayson (Dun), 3.8, 2, Janee Armstrong (Chch), 2.5, 3

Under 18 Boys Division
Myka Black (Chch), 13.6, 1, Neko Tohiariki (Chch), 13.2, 2, Conor McLennan (Chch), 12.6, 3, Jack McLeod (Dun), 9.9, 4

Under 18 Girls Division
Tegen Bishop (Chch), 12.5, 1, Eve Findlay (WC), 6.97, 2, Anika Ayson (Dun), 5.43, 3, Jaya  Reardon (Dun), 0, 4

Under 16 Boys Division
Tom Robinson (Whngrei), 15.5, 1, Myka Black (Chch), 13, 2, Neko Tohiariki (Chch), 9.9, 3, Ruben Peyroux (Dun), 9.33, 4

Under 16 Girls Division
Estella Hungerford (Chch), 11.7, 1, Anna Brock (Mnt), 7.6, 2, Liv Haysom (Piha), 7.5, 3, Ava Henderson (Chch), 4.3, 4

Under 14 Boys Division
James Millar (Chch), 10.7, 1, Dara O’Malley (Chch), 7.5, 2, Reuben Lyons (Kaik), 6.4, 3, Jack Mckenzie (Waikuku), 4.4, 4

Under 14 Girls Division
Ava Henderson (Chch), 13.9, 1, .Liv Haysom (Piha), 10.2, 2, Leah Wilson (Chch), 3.93, 3, Misha Peyroux (Dun), 3.27, 4

The Emerson’s South Island Surfing Championships is the second of six events on the 2017 New Zealand Surf Series which started with the Health 2000 National Surfing Championships held at Gisborne in January.  See below for remaining events:

Event 3: Exit Surf Men’s Canterbury Championships – 21-23 April, Christchurch (SNZ 4 star)
Event 4: Backdoor Oceanbridge Manu Bay Pro – 27-29 April, Raglan (SNZ 4 star)
Event 5: Rip Curl Raglan Pro pres by Galbraiths – 4-6 May, Raglan (SNZ 6 star)
Event 6: Backdoor BayBash – 17-18 November, Hawkes Bay (SNZ 3 star)

The event is also part of the New Zealand Grom Series and the New Zealand Longboard Series.

For more information on the Emerson’s South Island Surfing Championships please contact Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email benkennings@surfingnz.co.nz.

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