Ben Haworth has retained his Jesus Longboard Classic title, taking out the win in near perfect conditions in Polzeath, North Conrwall this weekend.
The event follows on from a successful ‘Jesus Surf Classic’ held at Croyde on 10 – 11 September. With the Jesus Surf Classic growing every year Christian Surfers took the decision 5 years ago to give the Longboard community their own dedicated event. This was done to enlarge the entry numbers and increase the number of categories being contested. Also to give the competitive longboard community a more focused stage to highlight the progression of UK longboarding. This year there are four categories- Open, Womens, Junior (U18) and Masters (over 35). Over the few years the event has been running the Jesus Longboard Classic has attracted some of the top longboard surfers in the UK, with previous winners including Ben Skinner and Candice O’Donnel.
Contest Director Phil Williams, head of Christian Surfers UK said that “After such great events in previous years, we are very excited to be running the Jesus Longboard Classic again this year at Polzeath. As with ‘The Jesus’ there will be some great hospitality for the competitors, as well as a prize purse of £1,000, with first place in the Open event winning £250”
It’s been a good week for Ben having just signed for Bear Surfboards, this is what he had to say, ”Im stoked to have won this contest as I won it last year as well. I also won a award for best progressive maneuver by doing a fins out off the lip in the final, retaining the award I picked up last year.
In the final the surf was perfect – 2-3 foot clean, peeling waves with really good shape and the sun was out. You couldn’t ask for better longboard waves! In the final I scored a 8.8 and a 9.2 securing my 1st place. STOKED!”
Our Roving Reporter on the ground was Guy from the Board Barn and this is his take on the event:
What a weekend this turned out to be, I reckon every North Devon Longboarder was there, haha, let the party commence! We had good 3ft clean offshore waves, the sun was shining and Team Board Barn AKA The Dream Team were there in force.
The Masters rounds were, as usual, stacked with a huge entry of us old un’s loving life to the max, with 2010 BLU Champ Shag Howell, Multiple BLU Champ Eric Davis, BLU 2011 Champ Keano, multiple Welsh title holder Colin ‘The Welsh Wizard’ Bright, oh and me, Mr Board Barn!
Skindog was there, Ben Haworth, Zak Lawton, Connor Griffiths, Alex Maddocks and a load more. The ladies had a great entry too, which is great to see, with Claire Smale representing North Devon.
Old guy’s in first and the level is getting crazy, we marched through the heats seeing some suprises on the way- Keano fell by the wayside, leaving the likes of Eric, Colin, Shaun Marlow, Rich Unsworth and me to crack on. Sadly I went out 3rd in the semi’s, GUTTED, but it gave me 5th overall so it was a VERY happy Mr Board Barn who settled down to watch the finals.
In the juniors we had the usual hot contenders Zak, Alex, Connor and young Jack Unsworth all surfing WAY above there age, a fantastic mix of power and style from all the lads.
The Lovely Ladies were great to watch, no mamby pamby graceful stuff here, oh no, these girls are Performance Longboarders and it showed, Jules Marlow was a surprise loss early on but the final was a goodun with Kiwi man slayer Anna ( oh yeah, she can and does beat the guy’s! ) Claire Smale, Oneill’s Ashley Bennet and the lovely Dee.
The Open saw Ben Haworth surfing like a man possessed- he’s on fire this year, Skindog was killing it as usual along with Angus Murray, Nico and The Barns Alex Maddocks nibbling at their heels getting through to the semi’s, and finishing a very creditable 5th in the Open, at 17 years old, cheeky Little bugger!
Sunday saw a bit of swell, not as good as Saturday but a couple of foot to play with and the odd larger set coming through. The level of Longboarding we are seeing here in the UK is outstanding, I’m so happy to be witnessing ’ The Revolution ‘ of Performance Longboarding. There’s no easy route through the heats these days, the level of surfing is just too good.
So, to the results:
1st Ben Haworth *
2nd Nico Burns
3rd Angus Murray
4th Ben Skinner
1st Zak Lawton *
2nd Alex Maddocks *
3rd Connor Griffiths
4th Jack Unsworth *
1st Adam Schell
2nd ???????? Sorry!
3rd Colin Bright
4th Pete Dudley
1st Claire Smale*
4th Ashley Bennet
* In case you were wondering, * means Team Board Barn AKA The Dream Team, am I a happy chappy, you can bet your last bottle of Rioja I am :0)