Winning streak continues for Elkington
Max Elkington continued his phenomenal winning streak, claiming his 15th national age group event title when he clinched the U16 boys crown in the Billabong Junior Series at Loch Ness, Port Elizabeth on Sunday.
The first of four surfing events that will crown champions in five age divisions for boys and girls in October was held in good waves at The Pipe in Port Elizabeth on Saturday.
Small waves and onshore winds saw organisers move to the open ocean wildside, where the finals were completed in tricky head-high surf.
Elkington, 15, caught the best wave that came through in the final and belted a series of radical manoeuvres to register his sixth consecutive Billabong Junior Series win, pocketing R1 200 and taking an early lead in the rankings.
Fellow Kommetjie resident Eli Beukes hung onto second place ahead of Bryce du Preez, of East London, and Dillon Hendriks, of Jeffreys Bay, who were third and fourth respectively.
In the U16 girls section, Kayla Nogueira turned the tables on fellow Durbanite S’Nenhlanhla Makhubu, who won the series title last year, in a tightly fought duel where the winning points were scored on the last ride of the final.
Tayla de Coning (East London) and Zoe Steyn (Kalk Bay) took the minor places.
The U14 boys event was another tight affair. Daniel Emslie, up from the U12 division last year, found the best backup wave after all four finalists registered one good ride each.
Nate Spalding (Durban), Mitch du Preez (East London) and Travis Pearce finished in that order.
Nogueira secured her second title when she dominated the U14 girls division, winning each heat she contested, including the final, where the Durbanite finished in front of Lisa van Heerden (Strand) and Aimee du Preez (East London).
Caroline Brown, of Cape Town, incurred a priority interference penalty that saw her lose one of her two counting rides and she dropped from second to fourth place.
The U12 boys title went to Durban’s Kyra Bennie, who convincingly beat local pair Nathan Plomaritis and C-Jay Posthumus, with Ethan Currin in fourth.
The U12 girls result was also affected by an interference call that saw Lisa van Heerden relegated to second spot behind winner Zia Hendriks, with Emma Bedser and Luanne Hurst collecting third and fourth places.
The newly introduced U10 division was completed in tricky waves at The Pipe, before the event was moved and was dominated by Durban’s Sergio Nogueira.
Davey Emslie, Michael Russel and Josh Malherbe finished second to fourth in the youngest division in the series events.
Luke Slijpen, of Llandudno, took home R2 000 for the best aerial manoeuvre and from the winner takes all 30 minute heat, while Davey Emslie was awarded the Billabong best claim of the contest.