Tommy Boucaut (Byron Bay, NSW) and Kirsten Ogden (Suffolk Park, NSW) hold off the best junior surfers in the country to win the prestigious National Final of the Rip Curl GromSearch series, presented by Telstra
Tommy Boucaut (Byron Bay, NSW) and Kirsten Ogden (Suffolk Park, NSW) hold off the best junior surfers in the country to win the prestigious National Final of the Rip Curl GromSearch series, presented by Telstra.
Friday 16th December: TOMMY Boucaut (Byron Bay, NSW) came into the last event of the 6 event National GromSearch series as the top rated surfer and justified that position in a tense 25 minute final at Coolum Beach (Qld).
Beating what event organisers are calling the most talented field in GromSearch history, Boucaut was ecstatic with the victory.
“It’s definitely the biggest win of my career. The field was so strong here and the other guys in the final are so good, I never felt comfortable” said Boucaut.
In tricky and inconsistent 1.5 metre conditions Boucaut locked in an excellent 8.67 (out of a possible 10) point ride on his very first wave to shoot to the lead early, only to struggle for a second scoring ride whilst the rest of the field was playing catch-up.
Japanese visitor and yesterday’s event winner Hiroto Arai (Chiba, Japan) was the first to apply serious pressure when he scored an 8.17 (out of a possible 10) midway through the heat.
At the same time North Narrabeen’s Jordan Lawler (NSW) was rewarded for his more selective approach and moved into contention with a 7.33.
Boucaut was feeling the pressure and commented, “It was great to get that first high score, but then I spent 15 minutes looking for my second score and was worried about Hiroto (Hiroto Arai) and Jordy (Jordan Lawler) catching me.”
As the clock wound down local hope Kelly Norris (Coolum, Qld) was left needing a near perfect score and Chris Robertson (Cronulla, NSW) had similar difficulties finding rides that offered high scoring potential.
Boucaut had done enough to hold onto the lead and was a very relieved champion as he was chaired up the beach.
The girls final followed a similar theme with both Stephanie Single (Lennox Head, NSW) and Kirsten Ogden (Suffolk Park, NSW) battling for a strong second score after good early rides.
Single took the early lead with a 7.00 point ride (out of a possible 10) and Ogden kept her in reach with a 7.40 (out of a possible 10) but desperately needed the back up.
It came with 5 minutes remaining when she did two massive turns for a heat high 8.17 (out of a possible 10) that put the final beyond doubt.
“I was searching for something to catch Steph and was lucky to get that left as I paddled out. Once the judges read the score I just had to hold on to the end,” she commented.
Sophie Bernard (Manly, NSW) improved her scores throughout the final but couldn’t get the score she needed and Emi Campbell (Denmark, WA) also had difficulty in the blustery conditions.
Tommy Boucaut (Byron Bay. NSW) was awarded the Air Asia Wave of the Day for his opening 8.67 point ride (out of a possible 10) that secured the win.
Emi Campbell (Denmark, WA) was awarded the Telstra performance award for her great effort as the youngest finalist (14 years old) in the National finals.
Official results, Rip Curl GromSearch NATIONAL FINAL
Under 16 Boys NATIONAL Final
1. Tommy Boucaut (Byron Bay, NSW) 15.17 (8.67 and 6.50)
2. Hiroto Arai (Chiba, Japan) 12.84 (8.17 and 4.67)
3. Jordan Lawler (North Narrabeen, NSW) 11.66 (7.33 and 4.33)
4. Kelly Norris (Coolum, Qld) 10.10 (5.67 and 4.43)
5. Chris Robertson (Cronulla, NSW) 10.00 (6.33 and 3.67)
Under 16 Girls NATIONAL Final
1. Kirsten Ogden (Suffolk Park, NSW) 15.57, (8.17 and 7.40)
2. Stephanie Single (Lennox Head, NSW) 12.00, (7.00 and 5.00)
3. Sophie Bernard (Manly, NSW) 9.57, (5.67 and 3.90)
4. Emilijana Campbell (Denmark, WA) (6.83, (3.50 and 3.33)
Stay tuned to www.surfingqueensland.com and www.ripcurl.com for news, photos and results relating to the event.
The Rip Curl GromSearch is presented by Telstra, with major partner Air Asia and associate partners Waves Magazine and DHD surfboards.
About Rip Curl GromSearch
2011 GROMSEARCH SERIES DATES:
Event 1: Tuesday 27th – Friday 30th September, 2011 - Jan Juc, VIC
Event 2: Monday 3rd – Thursday 6th October, 2011 – Coffs Harbour, NSW
Event 3: Saturday 22nd – Sunday 23rd October, 2011 - Trigg, WA
Event 4: Saturday 5th November, 2011 - Clifton Beach, TAS
Event 5: Saturday 12th – Sunday 13th November, 2011 - Middleton, SA
Event 6: Tues 13th – Friday 16th December, 2011 – Sunshine Coast, QLD
Rip Curl GromSearch Sunshine Coast Event – December 13-16
Rip Curl GromSearch National Final – December 16 (Sunshine Coast)
The six-event national Rip Curl GromSearch series has been circulating the country since 1999, giving surfers aged 16 and under the opportunity to showcase their talent in a fun, competitive environment.
Male and female champions from the National Final will be invited to represent Australia in the international final, held during the 2012 Rip Curl Pro at Bells Beach.
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