The South African Bodyboarding Team produced an excellent result at the International Surfing Association World Bodyboarding Championship which ended in Venezuela this last weekend.
The team of Iain Campbell, Tristan Roberts, Matthew Lombaard, Pamela Bowren and Georgi McKeone placed fourth overall and earned a copper medal, while Iain Campbell (CKZN) secured gold in the Drop Knee division final. 15 year-old Tristan Roberts (BOL) won a silver medal in the U18 division and Pamela Bowren (EP) placed 4th in the women’s final.
Matthew Lombard (BOL) in the mens division and Georgi McKeaone (SKZN) in the U18 girls were eliminated prior to the finals.
Team manager, Sean Oberholzer said “It was a great event and our team was very proud to represent South Africa at the World Championship. Coming from South Africa, we were not used to surfing the smaller waves of Venezuela. Nevertheless, the team did South Africa proud and brought back one gold and produced three finalists. The top four teams were very close in the overall points, so I am happy with the results.”
Team Brazil was the overall winner of the event, with Brazilian rider, Eder Luciano winning the Men’s title.
The event was held on Margarita Island in Venezuela and teams that competed included South Africa, Venezuela, Brazil, Japan and France.
South African Champion, Tristan Roberts narrowly lost out on the Boys title to young Frenchman, Maxime Castillo. According to Sean Oberholzer: “Tristan was leading for the majority of the final heat and surfed a more technical heat, but Castillo caught a bigger wave in the final minutes and pulled off some clean manoeuvres to clinch the title.”
Pamela Bowren, started strong in her final heat, but narrowly missed the bronze medal in the women’s division in a difficult battle with local Venezuelan, Yuleiner Gonzalez. IBA World champion Isabela De Souza (Brazil) and Sari Ohhara (Japan) battled it out for first and second respectively.
“I am stoked to have made it to the women’s final, as this was my goal, but would have preferred to have placed higher in the final. I am still happy with fourth place and overall it was a great experience!” said a proud Pamela.
The South African highlight of the championship was definitely Iain Campbell’s epic win in a thrilling final of the Drop Knee division. Campbell came up against world champion Cesar Bauer of Peru and Martin Mouradian of France, both of whom started off aggressively. But two good waves in the final minutes changed it all as Iain Campbell didn’t miss a wave and catapulted into first place – bringing the gold back to South Africa!
ISA World Bodyboarding Championship Winners:
- Eder Luciano (BRA) / OPEN Men
- Sari Ohhara (JAP) / OPEN Women
- Iain Campbell (RSA) / DROP KNEE
- Maxime Castillo (FRA) / UNDER 18 Boys
- Shiori Okazawa (JAP) / UNDER 18 Girls
The South African Bodyboarding Association and the South African Team would like to thank the team sponsor, Billabong South Africa
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About South African Bodyboarding Association:
SABA runs bodyboarding in South Africa. A non-profit organisation operating for the aim of developing and nurturing new bodyboarding talent, as well as providing rules and structure to contests from club level to national level.
SABA is an affiliate member of Surfing South Africa (SSA). Surfing South Africa is the recognised governing body for all forms of surfriding in South Africa and is a member of the SA Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA)