The South African surfing team celebrated a famous double at the 2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games in Panama yesterday when they were crowned the ISA World Team Champions and captain Shaun Joubert clinched the ISA Men’s World Champion title.
Team SA fought a see-saw battle for the most prestigious team title in world surfing, leading the standings on Days 5 and 6 before slumping to fourth place going into the final day when Joubert’s outstanding victory saw them overtake perennial rivals and defending champions Australia, emerging surfing powerhouse Peru and Brazil who earned silver, bronze and copper medals respectively.
In addition to the gold medals, the team collected the Fernando Aguerre World Team Champion Trophy, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) President’s Trophy and the once-off 5th Century Cup of the Discovery of the Pacific Ocean for winning the title for the first time outside South Africa and third time overall, after their triumphs in Durban in 2001 and in East London in 1978.
Joubert, who was the oldest member of the SA squad after turning 22 earlier this month, led his team victory by dominating the Men’s division from start to finish, advancing directly to the Grand Final by never finishing outside the top two in any of his seven heats, posting four of the top eight single ride scores, including the highest (9.87 out of 10), and three of the top six heat tallies.
After demolishing his opponents on the last day, leaving them needing a combination of two rides totalling 17.50 points as he advanced to the last four, Joubert then topped that in the final by racking up rides of 9.33 and 8.33 for a 17.66 point total.
The current ASP No. 104 and multiple SA age-group champion used a canny combination of excellent wave selection, superior heat management and long rides punctuated by explosive manoeuvres, with his variety of carves, cutbacks, vertical re-entries and aerials setting him apart from the rest.
“I really enjoyed the waves in Panama, we had amazing waves all event,” said an elated Shaun Joubert on the awards podium. “It’s nice to come as a team and actually be at the beach cheering the other guys and you want your team to do well. It’s fun to see all the flags and people from other countries, it’s a special event.”
In an interview shortly after the final, Joubert also explained how he had felt in tune with the waves at Santa Catalina in Panama ever since the team’s arrival a couple of days before the event started, comparing them to the similar right point breaks found around his home town of Mossel Bay. He also expressed his appreciation for the support of his teammates and how comfortable the entire team had been at the event which is a tribute to manager and coach Etienne Venter who motivated the team with an average age of just 20 to beat the world’s best.
While Joubert’s crown was the cherry on the top and contributed significantly to the team title, the performances of every team member was vital. Mikey February, fellow Kommetjie surfer Davey Brand, David van Zyl (Glenashley), Tanika Hoffman (Clifton) and Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis) all finished in the top 16 in their respective divisions as Team SA triumphed over the other 23 national teams and 120 surfers at the event.
For the record, Jean Carlos “Oli” Gonzalez (PAN) produced a fairytale result for the host nation when he became the first Panamanian surfer to earn a medal at the ISA World Surfing Games, finishing second and the only surfer capable of overtaking Joubert with one ride. Former ISA World Junior Champion, Cristobol de Col (PER), took the Men’s bronze medal and Russell Molony (AUS) the copper.
Australia dominated the Women’s event where Dimity Stoyle took gold, teammate Codie Klein the silver with the bronze going to Suelen Naraisa (BRA) and the copper to Ella Williams (NZL).
Full results and high resolution images from the 2013 ISA World Surfing Games can be found at www.isawsg.com Additional news and images of Team SA can be found at www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/surfing.sa
The 2013 South African surfing team has been provided with kit by RVCA.
Surfing South Africa (SSA) is the recognized governing body for the sport in South Africa. SSA is a member of the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (SASCOC) and the International Surfing Association (ISA)
2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games (Santa Catalina, Panama)
1. South Africa – Gold medal + Fernando Aguerre World Team Champion Trophy + IOC President’s Trophy + 5th Century Cup of the Discovery of the Pacific Ocean
2. Australia – Silver medal
3. Peru – Bronze medal
4. Brazil – Copper Medal
1. Shaun Joubert (Mossel Bay, RSA) – Gold medal
2. Jean Carlos “Oli” Gonzalez (PAN) – Silver medal
3. Cristobal de Col (PER) – Bronze medal
4. Russell Molony (AUS) – Copper medal
13. Mikey February (Kommetjie, RSA)
13. Davey Brand (Kommetjie, RSA)
16. David van Zyl (Glenashley, RSA)
1. Dimity Stoyle (AUS) – Gold medal
2. Codie Klein (AUS) – Silver medal
3. Suelen Naraisa (BRA) – Bronze medal
4. Ella Williams (NZL) – Copper medal
11. Tanika Hoffman (Clifton, RSA)
13. Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis, RSA)
Overall Team Standings
1. South Africa- 11,102 points
2. Australia- 10,332 points
3. Peru- 9,636 points
4. Brazil- 9,146 points
5. Panama- 7,946 points
6. Costa Rica- 7,678 points
7. Argentina- 7,422 points
8. Chile- 7,286 points
9. Venezuela- 7,000 points
10. Mexico- 6,752 points
11. Ecuador- 6,630 points
12. New Zealand- 6,620 points
13. Puerto Rico- 6,520 points
14. Japan- 6,116 points
15. Italy- 6,060 points
16. El Salvador- 5,400 points
17. Guatemala- 4,866 points
18. Switzerland- 4,504 points
19. Uruguay- 3,732 points
20. Jamaica- 3,096 points
21. Turkey- 1,152 points
22. Canada- 720 points
23. Sweden- 720 points
24. Russia- 576 points
The top 7 placed teams qualified for the ISA China Cup, the ISA’s signature event, that is held annually in January on Hainan Island in the South China Sea, where South Africa will be the top seeds in 2014..
Pictured: Team South Africa celebrate their ISA World Team Champions title on the podium at the 2013 Reef ISA World Surfing Games in Panama with their gold medals, the Fernando Aguerre World Team Champions Trophy and IOC President’s Trophy. (From left to right) Mikey February, David van Zyl, Davey Brand, Men’s ISA World Champion Shaun Joubert (Capt), Tanika Hoffman, Faye Zoetmulder, Etienne Venter.
Photo: ISA / Tweddle
Pictured: Shaun Joubert (Mossel Bay) boosts a ‘superman air’ on his way to the 2013 ISA World Champion title at the Reef ISA World Surfing Games in Panama yesterday (Sunday)
Photo: ISA / Tweddle