Participants in the 2021 National Surfing Championships fronted up to massive 2.0m swell conditions at Piha Beach, Auckland today (Sunday 10th January). Day one of the event was completed with New Zealand’s top male surfers putting in some committed performances to advance through the early rounds.
The large West Coast swell hammered the line up with light variable winds in the morning that turned sea breeze in the afternoon, as the swell slowly abated.
Olympic hopeful Kehu Butler (Mnt) found himself in the opening heat of the entire event. Butler pushed the limits on the way to a comfortable heat win despite buckling his board and having return to shore to get a backup surfboard midway through the heat. Butler posted a 12.5 point heat total to advance to the Round of 32.
Advancing alongside Butler was Waihi Beach surfer Levi Stewart who was one of several top seeds to advance including Josef Jungwirth (Rag) and Luis Southerwood (Whaka) who both looked in sharp form.
Making a comeback to the competitive arena was ex-New Zealand representative Sean Peggs (Tai) who instantly found his rhythm to advance through to the next round with an 11.8 point heat total and the heat win.
Surfers advancing today will meet up with the top seeds at the event on day two with seven-time national champion Billy Stairmand (Rag) and others set to hit the water mid-morning immediately after New Zealand’s top female surfers open the day’s proceedings.
The junior divisions rounded out the day with Jungwirth again in dominant form posting the single highest wave score of the day with an 8.25 point ride and 13.25 point total. Gisborne’s Finn Vette was close behind with an impressive 13.0 point heat total and win, advancing to the quarterfinals which will be contested on day two.
Jungwirth and Vette were joined by the likes of Tom Butland (Tara), Tom Robinson (Whngrei) and Kora Cooper (Rag) who all looked to have early season form pushing through to the last 16 surfers.
In the Under 16 Boys Division, local Piha surfer Bill Byers made up for an early loss in the Under 18 Boys Division with a comprehensive heat win in the final heat of the day. Navryn Malone made it two wins for the day in his heat and Mount Maunganui’s Tao Mouldey advanced to the quarterfinals with the highest score of the round, an 11.5 point heat total.
Day two will see the introduction of the female divisions with the Open Women’s Division starting the day followed by the second round of the Open Men’s Division featuring the event’s top seeds.
Action will take place from 8am – 4pm daily with the primary venue being at the southern end of Piha Beach.
All divisions have a staggered start to the event as per below:
Day 2 – Addition of all women’s divisions
Day 3 – Addition of men’s senior age group divisions
Day 4 – Addition of longboard divisions
Day 5 – Addition of SUP divisions and bodyboard
Day 6 – Addition of kneeboard
Day 7 – All divisions*
*Finals for some divisions will be contested prior to Day 7.
Please see below for the results from Day One of the 2021 National Surfing Championships pres by The Trusts Community Foundation held at Piha Beach Auckland today, Sunday 10th January.
Open Men’s Division Round of 48
Kehu Butler (Mnt), 12.5, 1, Levi Stewart (Waihi Bch), 11.7, 2, Jai Wallis (Piha), 6.65, 3, Marc Moore (Auck), 6, 4
Reuben Woods (Mnt), 7.75, 1, Dawson Tamati (Tara), 5.5, 2, Karne Gabbott (Dun), 4.35, 3, Cole Hareb (Tara), 4.3, 4
Navryn Malone (Rag), 9.45, 1, Jackson Peak (Auck), 8.75, 2, Luke Rogers (Dun), 8.5, 3, Te Kauwhata Kauwhata (Whngrei), 5, 4
Josef Jungwirth (Rag), 11.7, 1, Patrick Braithwaite (Gis), 6.75, 2, Reuben Lyons (Kaik), 3.95, 3, Corban Grainger (Tara), 1.5, 4
Luis Southerwood, 11.8, 1, Jeremy Grainger (Tara), 8.65, 2, Cory Palmer (Tara), 7.05, 3, Tom Murray (Piha), 3, 4
Thomas Carter (Waihi Bch), 6.9, 1, Jack McLeod (Dun), 6.55, 2, Storm Carroll (Piha), 6.05, 3, Eli Jacobs (Whngrei), N/S
Zac Curle (Waihi Beach), 8.55, 1, Jayden Willoughby (Rag), 8.15, 2, Fraser Falconer (Auck), 7.1, 3, Jack Morrison (Auck), 2.85, 4
Sean Peggs (Tairua), 11.8, 1, Callum Chuter (Mnt), 7.25, 2, Jacob Buckle (Whngrei), 7.15, 3, Chayne Dowsett (Whngrei), 5.5, 4
Under 18 Boys Round 1
Kora Cooper (Rag), 10.9, 1, Tom Robinson (Whngrei), 10.3, 2, Ari D’Anvers (Whngrei), 9.4, 3, Valentin Gadras (Rag), 3.25, 4
Navryn Malone (Rag), 9.2, 1, Max de Groot (HBay), 8.85, 2, Connor Van Der Pol (Mnt), 3.7, 3, Robert Coutanche – Gould (Auck), 3, 4
Reuben Lyons (Kaik), 9.75, 1, Thomas Charlesworth (Auck), 8.65, 2, Karne Gabbott (Dun), 3.05, 3, Charlie Webb (Auck), 2.1, 4
Tom Butland (Tara), 12, 1, Jai Wallis (Piha), 8.75, 2, Te Kauwhata Kauwhata (Whngtrei), 5.8, 3
Kalani Louis (Tara), 10.75, 1, Jackson Peak (Auck), 10.55, 2, Bill Byers (Piha), 10, 3
Luke Rogers (Dun), 6.55, 1, Joshua Wynne – Lewis (HBay), 6.25, 2, Mathias Thompson (Piha), 5.25, 3, Jacob Buckle (Whangrei), 3.7, 4
Josef Jungwirth (Rag), 13.3, 1, Jayden Willoughby (Rag), 8, 2, Izak Hayes (Whngrei), 6.8, 3
Finn Vette (Gis), 13, 1, Jack McKenzie (Chch), 7.7, 2, Luca Rendle (Hbay), 7.15, 3
Will Hardie (Piha), 7.1, 4
Under 16 Boys Round of 28
Beau Woods (Mnt), 9.9, 1, Oliver Janes (Mangawahi), 4.5, 2, Christian Fougere (Piha), 4.4, 3, Reef Barrett (Auck), 1.2, 4
Under 16 Boys Round of 26
Navryn Malone (Rag), 10.2, 1, Ben Milne (WGM), 7, 2, Will Hardie (Piha), 6.85, 3, Oliver Janes (Mangawahi), 2.4, 4
Tao Mouldey (Mnt), 11.5, 1, Izak Hayes (Whngrei), 9.15, 2, Daniel Cox (WGM), 3.85, 3, Ashton Rogers (WGM), 1.5, 4
Jack McKenzie (Chch), 9.75, 1, Tai Murphy (Whaka), 6.95, 2, Karne Gabbott (Dun), 5.6, 3, Riku Gordon (Mah), 5.1, 4
Kalani Louis (Tara), 9.45, 1, Ben Fougere (Piha), 6.3, 2, Lewis Murphy (Dun), 5.55, 3, Leo Hobson (Mur), 3.55, 4
Cooper Ashill (Whngrei), 9.45, 1, Rakiatea Tau (Chch), 6.3, 2, Jack Tyro (Chch), 5.5, 3, Mali Millen (Tai), 3.55, 4
Bill Byers (Piha), 11, 1, Beau Woods (Mnt), 9.1, 2, Mathias Thompson (Piha), 8.15, 3, Dale Cromhout (Hbay), 4.4, 4
The National Surfing Championships mark the first of several domestic events this season which will climax with a finale for the top 16 males and 8 females across the Open Men and Women’s Divisions.
2021 marks the thirteenth time the National Championships has been held at Piha with the consistent waves of Auckland’s West Coast making the venue a good location for the seven-day event.
The longest running surfing event in New Zealand has a 57-year history and encompasses 29 divisions spread across all disciplines and age groups making for a largely inclusive event, filled with high level surfing as well as good times in and out of the water. Over 320 entries have been received for the event.
For further information on the 2021 National Surfing Championships please contact Surfing New Zealand’s Ben Kennings on 021 2278732 or email email@example.com.
High resolution action images of the surfing will be available to media free of charge upon request.
Live scoring of the event will be on www.compusurf.com.au.
The final day of the event will be broadcast live on Sky Sport Channel 9. The event will also be webcast live on Sky Sport Next.
The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506. This will be updated daily at approximately 7am with venue, divisions contested and conditions.
Keep up with all the action by following @surfingnz on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #Nats2021 to follow the story.
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Author: Ben Kennings