Perfect surf peeled off all day for the opening day of the Billabong Junior Series presented by BOS Event 1 at Magntubes, and the best junior surfers in South Africa as well as an international contingent, took to the water in earnest.
The contest organisers had a quick reshuffle of heats, as the excellent but solid conditions were more suited to some of the older boys divisions.
The U16 Boys were the first to hit the water, and stand-outs included Joshe Faulkner from JBay and Ford Van Jaarsveldt from Kommetjie as well as Ethan Fletcher from Cape Town.
The first round of the U20 Pro division was next, and Griffin Colapinto from USA threw down the first ten-point ride of the event, for a perfect wave that reeled through from the outside and that saw him perform multiple high-risk turns all the way through to the inside.
In the first U20 Men’s Round 2 heat 1, the international surfers Ethan Osborne from USA as well as Colapinto provided a massive dual upset by defeating both Shane Sykes and Slade Prestwich in perfect four-foot Magnatubes.
“That was the gnarliest heat I’ve ever been in," said Osborne. "I didn’t think I was going to make it at all. I mean, Slade Prestwich was surfing in the WSL event earlier. But then I got that one wave, and made it, and was so stoked. This is my first time to South Africa, and this is my third day here and the waves are some of the best I’ve ever surfed.”
Another heat that saw some dramatic action was the U20 Men’s Round 2 Heat 2. In the dying minutes of the heat, local surfer Matt McGillivray launched into a massive do-or-die full rotation air reverse to sneak into second place behind Ethan Ewing, but ahead of Adin Masencamp and Seth Moniz. “That was so stressful,” said an elated McGillivray. “I hadn’t really had a good wave until that last one. The wave didn’t offer me much so I knew I just had to throw it out there.”
“That was a great day of surfing,” said Billabong South Africa Marketing Manager Chad D’Arcy. “The waves were so good for the competitors. High performance walls all day, and the junior surfers really raised the bar in their performances today. It looks like another good morning tomorrow, so we’re looking at an early start again in the morning.”
The Billabong Junior Series Presented By BOS is part of the JBay Winterfest - www.jbaywinterfest.com - a multi-sports and music festival in Jeffreys Bay.