SA pair shine in El Salvador Masters surfing event

2011-10-21 00:00

CHRIS Knutsen and Gary van Wieringen led Team South Africa’s charge for higher honours at the 2011 El Salvador ISA World Masters Surfing Championships as day two saw 24 heats of high-performance surfing.

Yesterday’s heats were held in heavy rain, but this lined up waves of between one and 1,5 metres that gave some glimpses of the potential of the Punta Roca surf break hosting the event.

All 124 competitors in the event have completed at least one heat and just 40 remain in the qualifying stream of the five divisions, with each of the 21 nations having team members in the sudden-death repecharge rounds of the double elimination format.

Knutsen, a three-time ISA World Masters gold medallist, got the campaign to defend his Grand Kahuna (over 50) title under way with an outstanding performance.

Selecting the best waves in the 20-minute heat, the former four-time South African champion from Durban racked up rides of 7,50 and 6,67 (both out of 10 points) for a heat total of 14,17, which was more than three points better than the next highest result in the division.

“I felt pretty good out there this morning, so I was quite excited to head out into the water and start the heat with a good wave,” said Knutsen.

“I enjoyed the heat, conditions were good and it was a great start of the contest for me. Regarding this year’s event, I think it is good to see other countries like the USA here in El Salvador. I’m sure that it will be a good surfing event.” — Supplied.

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