Two locals surfing in Costa Rica

2016-08-09 06:00
Catching some waves: The South African team are from the left Jordy Maree (Kalk Bay), Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis), Matthew McGillivray (Jeffreys Bay), Tanika Hoffman (Hout Bay), Dylan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay), Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) and Surfing South Africa (SSA) President Johnny Bakker from Port Elizabeth, who is the team manager. PHOTO: Surfing South Africa

Catching some waves: The South African team are from the left Jordy Maree (Kalk Bay), Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis), Matthew McGillivray (Jeffreys Bay), Tanika Hoffman (Hout Bay), Dylan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay), Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) and Surfing South Africa (SSA) President Johnny Bakker from Port Elizabeth, who is the team manager. PHOTO: Surfing South Africa

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Tanika Hoffman from Hout Bay and Jordy Maree from Kalk Bay are the two Capetonians in the South African team competing in the INS ISA World Surfing Games in Jacóstet, ó slegs wanneer na dorp verwys, Costa Rica.

The surfing competition started at Jaco Beach on Sunday, Surfing South Africa, said in a press release.

South Africa, who are unseeded as no team was sent to the 2015 event, face tough opposition in the eight day event which ends with the finals next Sunday.

The South African challenge for honours got off to a mixed start on Sunday when two members of the team advanced directly to the next round of the main event and the other two were relegated to the gruelling repechage rounds.

Organisers completed all 24 heats of Men’s Round 1 in one metre waves at Jaco Beach with South Africa getting off to a good start when Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) posted one of the top 10 heat totals of the day’s action – 13.34 out of 20 – to win his opening encounter.

Including an excellent 8.27 (the day’s seventh highest score for a single ride) in his tally, Sykes finished just ahead of Francisco Bellorin.

Jordy Maree (Kalk Bay) was next up but, despite looking in good form, the replacement in the team for an injured Michael February, was unable to find the waves that offered high scoring potential and finished fourth in a heat won by 2014 ISA champion Leandro Usuna from Argentina.

Dylan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay) joined Maree in the Repechage stream when he was narrowly pipped for second place in a closely contested, high scoring heat where all four competitors were separated by less than two points.

Fellow Jeffreys Bay resident Matt McGillivray ensured that the team finished the day in good spirits.

Using his trademark aerial skills, McGillivray completed a high flying air-reverse that earned an excellent 8.60 from the judges, the third highest score of the day, to grab second place and advance to Round 2 of the main event.

While competitors in the repechage stream can still make their way to the final of their division, they need to compete in almost twice as many heats as those in the main event stream and cannot afford to finish outside of the top two in any subsequent heat.

Costa Rica, the defending team champions and event hosts, along with USA and the powerful French team, saw all four of their men advance directly into Round 2 of the main event on Day 1. All of the other 23 teams in the event have at least one team member facing the cutthroat repechage rounds.

Gold, silver, bronze and copper medals will be awarded to the top four in the Men’s and Women’s divisions, as well as the top four national teams at the event, after the finals are concluded on Sunday 14 August. South Africa won the team title in 1978, 2001 and 2013.

The South African women, Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis), who was unanimously elected the team captain on Friday, and Tanika Hoffman was in action yesterday (Monday) when the Women’s event started.


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