Faulkner, Woolf triumph at Billabong Junior Series

2017-10-05 06:00
The u.16 boys’ series titles were won by Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay).  Photo:KODY MCGREGOR

The u.16 boys’ series titles were won by Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay). Photo:KODY MCGREGOR

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THE 20th annual champions in the Billabong Junior Series presented by All Aboard Travel were crowned at Seal Point in Cape St Francis on Sunday after the fourth and final events in the 2017 series were completed in highly contestable 1 to 1.5 metre waves and glassy conditions.

Jake Elkington (Kommetjie) and Sophie Bell (Salt Rock) clinched the premier u.18 boys’ and girls’ Billabong Junior Series titles, which earned them each a coveted trip to the tropical surfing paradise of Bali. They also topped the World Surf League (WSL) Africa Junior regional rankings lists and are the 2017 WSL Africa Junior champions.

The u.16 boys’ and girls’ series titles were won by Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay) and Tayla de Coning (East London) respectively, despite neither of them winning any of the four events. Ceara Knight (Cape Town) and Daniel Emslie (East London) each secured two event victories on their way to the u.14 girls’ and boys’ series titles, while Kyra Bennie (Vredehoek), the u.12 boys’ series champion, won three of the four events in 2017.

The seven finals run at Seal Point on Sunday produced phenomenal surfing with Ford van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie) capturing his first WSL Junior Qualifying Series (JQS) men’s event victory after defeating Calvin Goor (Salt Rock). The lanky 18-year-old Capetonian posted a near perfect score of 9.0 out of ten plus three rides in the seven point range, the best of which was a 7.87, and his heat total of 16.87 left Goor still needing a 9.76 when time ran out.

Former Jeffreys Bay local Kai Woolf, now competing under the New Zealand flag, won both the JQS (u.18) women’s event and the u.16 girls’ division, delivering heat totals in the mid-teens in both finals. Woolf finished ahead of Taghiti Gericke (Wilderness) in the one-on-one JQS final while Olivia Izzard (La Lucia), Summer Sutton (Kommetjie) and Tayla de Coning (East London) challenged her throughout the u.16 final.

Visiting French teenager George Pittar won the u.16 boys’ title, relegating last year’s u.14 boys’ winner Tide Lee Ireland (Durban) to the runner-up spot while Luke Thompson (Durban) and Zoe Steyn (East London) dominated the u.14 boys’ and girls’ finals respectively.

Brazilian Ryan Kanailo was outstanding in the u.12 boys’ final, earning a near perfect heat total of 18.70 out of 20 that left all three of his opponents needing to replace both their highest scoring rides in order to overtake him.

The highly anticipated VonZipper Air Show was staged after the finals and provided Calvin Goor (Salt Rock) with the chance to shine as he clinched the R2 000 winner-takes-all prize purse for landing the best aerial manoeuvre.

2017 Final Series Rankings

U.18 Boys

  • 1st - Jake Elkington (Kommetjie)
  • 2nd - Ford van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie)
  • 3rd - Max Elkington (Kommetjie)

U.18 Girls

  • 1st - Sophie Bell (Salt Rock)
  • 2nd - Summer Sutton (Kommetjie)
  • 3rd - Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga)

U.16 Boys

  • 1st - Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay)
  • 2nd - Saxton Randall (Durban)
  • 3rd - York van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie)

U.16 Girls

  • 1st - Tayla de Coning (East London)
  • 2nd - Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga)
  • 3rd - Summer Sutton (Kommetjie)

U.14 Boys

  • 1st - Daniel Emslie (East London)
  • 2nd - Mitch du Preez (East London)
  • 3rd - Luke Thompson (Durban)

U.14 Girls

  • 1st - Ceara Knight (Cape Town)
  • 2nd - Zoe Steyn (East London)
  • 3rd - Caroline Brown (Cape Town)

U.12 Boys

  • 1st - Kyra Bennie (Vredehoek)
  • 2nd - C-Jay Posthumus (Port Elizabeth)
  • 3rd - Kai Hall (Durban)

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