The South African Junior Surfing team posted a near perfect performance on the opening day of the VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship which got underway in excellent 1.0 to 1.5 metre waves and ideal weather conditions at Oceanside in California on Monday.
Team captain Shane Sykes led the way as seven of the eight SA team members in action on the day advanced directly to Round 2 of the Main Event in the world’s biggest junior surfing event which ran through 30 heats in each of U18 and U16 boys’ divisions.
Competing in the U18 boys’ on the South side of the Oceanside Pier, Sykes set the bar for the team as early as the second heat of the event when he won his closely fought Round 1 heat. He progressed along with heat runner-up, Luis Perloiro from Portugal, as they relegated their third and fourth placed opponents from Belgium and Denmark to the grueling Repercharge Rounds.
Teammates Ntando Msibi and Richard Kidd racked up narrow victories before Michael Monk, competing in the last heat of the day, made it a clean sweep of opening day heat wins for SA’s U18 boys.
Sebastian Williams, contesting the U16 boys’ division in great waves on the North side of the pier, delivered the standout performance for the team. Having grown up in California and Mexico before relocating to South Africa, Williams was in tune with the waves on offer and used his wide repertoire of manoeuvres to earn scores of 8.43 (the third highest of the day) and 7.50 for a two-wave heat tally of 15.93, the fourth highest in all 60 heats run on Day 1.
Fellow SA U16’s, Luke Malherbe and Adin Masencamp, both finished comfortably in second place behind their respective Portuguese rivals to remain in the Main Event stream.
Joshe Faulkner was the only SA team member to drop into the Repecharge Rounds when he slipped to third place in his opening encounter. The tenacious teenager from Jeffreys Bay will being doing his utmost to post first or second place finishes in 10 consecutive heats to reach the Grand Final of the U16 boys division.
Logan Bediamol from the Hawaii recorded both the highest single ride score (9.67 out of 10) and heat total (17.87 out of 20) in the U16 boys as the defending ISA World Junior Team champions completed eight out of eight heat victories in their quest to secure back-to-back team gold medals and the prestigious ISA World Junior Team Champion Trophy.
The VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship runs until Sunday 18 October and the action can be followed live here at approximately 4pm SA time daily. The latest news, results, photographs and video footage are also available on the website.
Other ways to follow the South African Junior Team’s progress include:
Daily releases : www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za
Surfing South Africa Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/1Gw6ytp
2015 SA Junior Surfing Team Facebook page: http://on.fb.me/1Lg8M1Q
VISSLA ISA World Junior Surfing Championship
Schedule for Day 2 (Tuesday – South African Time)
South Podium: (Webcast live)
4pm 2 heats Boys U-18 Main Event Round 1
4:40pm 16 heats Girls U-18 Main Event Round 1 (SA’s Teal Hogg in Heat 7, Chanelle Botha H10)
10pm – 2am 12 heats Girls U-16 Main Event Round 1 (Olivia Izzard H3)
4pm 2 heats Boys U-16 Main Event Round 1
4:40pm 16 heats Boys U-18 Main Event Round 2 (Shane Sykes H2, Ntando Msibi H7, Richard Kidd H9, Michael Monk H16)
10pm – 2am 12 heats Boys U-16 Main Event Round 2 (Sebastian Williams H7, Luke Malherbe H10)