South African Women Advance as Men Struggle on Day 4 of INS ISA World Surfing Games
The South African surfing team continued to produce mixed results on Day 4 of the INS ISA World Surfing Games at Jaco Beach in Costa Rica with the women delivering great performances and all four men losing out.
Tanika Hoffman roared back to form with a scintillating display in Women’s Repecharge Round 2. Competing against 2015 event runner-up Leilani McGonagle of Costa Rica and rivals from Chile and Mexico in solid 1-1.5 metre waves, the 23 year-old from Hout Bay opened her account with a 6.33 and was in second position when she caught the wave of the heat with just minutes remaining.
Riding on her forehand, Hoffman confidently tore the wave apart with a series of top to bottom manoeuvres in the critical sections and was justifiably awarded an confidence-boosting score of 9.33, the seventh highest of just 10 rides over nine points recorded at the event so far.
“I was really happy to find a running wave and I surfed it as well as I could,” said an elated Hoffman of her heat winning ride. “The Repecharge Rounds are kind of nice because you can get into a rhythm and really get to know the wave at the contest site.”
See an interview and the ride by Tanika in the Day 4 video highlights at 1.01 in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXWYNKxVhGI
Faye Zoetmulder (Cape St Francis) also produced an assured performance in her Repecharge Round 2 heat. The team captain dueled with Tashiro Nagisa (JAP) throughout and eventually finished runner-up as the pair eliminated girls from Ecuador and Switzerland from the event.
Hoffman and Zoetmulder will resume their quest for individual honours and team points in Women’s Repecharge Round 3 today.
In contrast to their female teammates, the four South African men struggled in the conditions with only Matt McGillivray able to post a double figure heat total. The Jeffreys Bay teenager amassed 11.80 points, well shy of the 14 point tallies of Santiago Muniz (ARG) and Pedro Henrique (POR) who finished first and second, and dropped into the Repecharge rounds.
Shane Sykes (Salt Rock) was also well off the pace in his Main Event Round 3 heat, posting a heat total of 9.94, placing fourth and joining McGillivray in Repercharge Round 4 where they both still have the opportunity to progress towards the business end of the event.
A startling feature of the Men’s event in Costa Rica is the complete absence of surfers from the traditional ISA powerhouses in the Main event stream at the halfway point of the event. With Brazil, Hawaii and Tahiti not represented this year, there is not one surfer from Australia, USA, France or South Africa among the 12 surfers who have yet to finish outside the top two in any heat.
As surfing enters the exciting era of Olympic sport, the policy of holding every World Surfing Games since 2009 in Latin America is paying off handsomely as Round 4 of the Main Event is made up of two surfers each from hosts Costa Rica, Venezuela, Peru, Argentina and Portugal, and one each from Chile and Japan.
After the euphoria of the women’s performances, South Africa lost their first two team members when Jordy Maree (Kalk Bay), the star of Day 3 and still the holder of the event’s single highest single ride score, and Dylan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay) were both eliminated.
Competing in Men’s Repecharge Round 2, Maree could only accumulate 8.26 points and placed fourth, leaving the event in equal 61st place overall and contributing 180 points to the team total.
Lightfoot, who has been suffering from a mystery virus that saw him hospitalized after the opening ceremony, placed third yesterday with a heat tally of 9.07 and in 49th place overall with 240 team points.
Five national teams – USA, Australia, Peru, Japan and France – still have all six team members in contention while four – Portugal, Costa Rica, Argentina and New Zealand have had one surfer eliminated. At the midway point of the event South Africa holds 10th position in the provisional rankings.
Surfline, the official event forecaster, is predicting that a new 1-1.5 metre South West swell will continue to show more size on Thursday, August 11. The swell is expected to hold through the contest period, which ends with the finals on Sunday, August 14.
All four South Africans still in contention will be in action today at Jaco Beach.
Schedule: Day 4 – Thursday 10 August
(South African time & SA team member’s heat number)
3:30 pm – 4:30 pm: 3 heats Women Main Event Round 3 (N/A)
4:30 pm – 6:30 pm: 6 heats Men Repecharge Round 3 (N/A)
6:30 pm – 7:30 pm: 3 heats Women Repecharge Round 3 (Zoetmulder H2; Hoffman H3)
7:30 pm – 9:30 pm: 6 heats Men Repecharge Round 4 (Sykes H1; McGillivray H6)
All the action from the INS ISA World Surfing Games, including news, results, video footage, images and LIVE webcasts, can be found athttp://isaworlds.com/wsg/2016/en/ with results and news on www.surfingsouthafrica.co.za
Article from Surfing South Africa