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Trev's Blog

Student Surf Tour – Croyde

March 20, 2012

Sunshine, warmth and waves rarely all appear at the same time at UK surf competitions, but last weekends Student Surf Tour event in Croyde bucked the trend. After initial showers, surfers were treated to punchy, contestable conditions in the early spring sunshine at Croyde Bay.

The event, which ran over the weekend of 16-18th March was the third stop for the newly formed Student Surf Tour, and was attended by entrants from Plymouth, Cardiff, Swansea Metropolitan, Arts University College Bournemouth, Falmouth, Aberywstwth, Manchester, Liverpool, UWIC, UWE, Oxford Brookes, Bath and Bath Spa.

A total of 40 competitors entered the Men’s competition, which kicked off around 10am on Saturday. Some of the surfers are becoming regular faces on the Student Surf Tour, Sam Coad, Tom Perkins (Plymouth), Jack Ellis (UWIC)  and Charlotte Bayliss (Cardiff) have attended all three events, so Croyde was to be another chance to steal the top slot on the leaderboard from Sam ‘Cody Maverick’.

After the first round, an already talented roster of surfers was whittled down to the top 16 in student surfers in Britain. Saturday’s surfing was concluded with the Quarter Finals, seeing strong performances from the regular faces as well as newcomers from Aberwystwth and Manchester.  The sun continued to shine, and other than one snapped Firewire and some interesting emails from the Lord Mayor of Utterly Ridiculous Complaints, the day was a success.

Saturday evening unfolded in traditional SST style, kicking off with a rugby and St Paddys day booze up followed by SeanMacRadio DJ Set at The Thatch, Croyde. The less said about the rest of the evening’s events, the better!

Sunday’s first Men’s semi final took place at the height of the hangover as the 8 remaining competitors were reduced to 4. The final consisted of rival team mates Tom Perkins and Sam Coad (Plymouth), Tim ‘cheeky hobbit’ Walker (Falmouth) and Jack Ellis (UWIC). After struggling to find any waves in the final, Cody Maverick had to admit defeat and took 4th place, with Perko in 3rd chasing Jack who took second. The top spot went to Tim ‘Frodo’ Walker from Falmouth, who will be receiving a custom Adams Surfboard in return for his sterling performance!

Female student surfers clearly hadn’t read Koasters ‘call to arms’ article published by Eyeball HQ prior to the event and only 6 entered the Women’s division. After some great surfing in the extended 30-minute one heat final, local lass Jemima Knight (Bath Spa) took the top spot, followed by SST regular Charlotte Bayliss. (Cardiff) 3rd and 4th places also went to Cardiff students Franki Pioli and Julie Royer, with Ellen from Bath narrowly defeating Gwithian SST 2011 winner Laura ‘laughalot’ Smith.

Croyde also saw the first Retro/Longboard Cup, seeing a selection of different surfboards being taken out by competitors in the one heat final. Alex Johnston (AUCB) rode a 5’3 single fin foamie and sported a pair of leopard print boxer shorts, scoring an extra 10 points for AUCB in the process. If anyone in Croyde has these pants, please return them to SST Ltd! The Longboard Cup was won by Elliot Withers (AUCB) who needed to win to back up his impressive pre-event Facebook banter. Andy ‘likes to snap longboards’ Pennock took second place and left the heat with his surfboard in one piece. Liam Clayton (Falmouth) followed in 3rd, with Charlotte Bayliss (Cardiff), Charlie Bradbury (Manchester) and Alex Johnston (AUCB) making up 4th, 5th and 6th.

The awards ceremony was held at The Thatch, where Tim, Jemima and Elliot were presented with their awards. Tim takes a surfboard courtesy of top Cornish shapers Adams Surfboards, Jemima bags herself a new wetsuit from Gul and Elliot won a huge box of goodies kindly donated by Board Barn, Devon’s superb surf outlet.

Massive thanks to sponsors Relentless Energy Drink, Breo, Adams Surfboards, Gul, Dogcam, Board Barn, Skinners Brewery, Kooksurfer, Walking On Waves, Eyeball HQ, Wavelength Magazine, Paradigm Threads and Gecko Boards. Special thanks to The Thatch Croyde and Park Dean holidays for letting us surf/party/eat/sleep in Croyde for the weekend.

Punctures seemed to be a bit of a theme for the weekend but Matt Knight didn’t let that stop him and the crew helping to make the event such a success. Huge thanks to the British Junior Surf Team for their hard work, judges Kerry Powell, Ester Spears, Joe Burke, Liam Dennis-Green, Beach Marshalls Rob Tibbles and Taz ‘how long have we ran this heat for please sign my surfboard’ Knight. Also can’t forget Llyr and Lyndon who kept us healthy and safe throughout the weekend.

Thanks everyone, see you in Scarborough in May!

Photos: Andy Walton/Gecko Boards, Taya Black, Ethan Palmer,Chris Brown, SST Crew

Results:

MEN’S
•    Tim Walker (Falmouth)
•    Jack Ellis (UWIC)
•    Tom Perkins (Plymouth)
•    Sam Coad (Plymouth)

MEN’S TEAM
•    Plymouth
•    Falmouth
•    Aberystwyth
•    UWIC
•    Oxford Brookes
•    AUCB
•    Bath
•    Manchester
•    Swansea Met
•    UWE
•    Liverpool

WOMEN’S
•    Jemima Knight (Bath Spa)
•    Charlotte Bayliss (Cardiff)
•    Franki Pioli (Cardiff)
•    Julie Royer (Cardiff)
•    Ellen (Bath)
•    Laura Smith (UWE)

WOMEN’S TEAM
•    Cardiff
•    Bath Spa
•    UWE

LONG/RETRO CUP
•    Elliot Withers (AUCB)
•    Andy Pennock (Bath)
•    Liam Clayton (Falmouth)
•    Charlotte Bayliss (Cardiff)
•    Charlie Bradbury (Manchester)
•    Alex Johnston (AUCB)

DISTANCE
Manchester     25pts
Liverpool    25pts
FANCY DRESS
Staffs        15pts
LAD AWARD
Tom Perkins    5pts

EVENT TOTAL SST CROYDE
•    CARDIFF        300PTS
•    PLYMOUTH         255 PTS
•    FALMOUTH        250PTS
•    AUCB            202PTS
•    BATH            135PTS
•    ABERYSTWYTH    125PTS
•    MANCHESTER    104PTS
•    BATH SPA        100PTS
•    UWIC            90PTS
•    OXFORD BROOKES    60PTS
•    UWE            52PTS
•    STAFFS        15PTS
•    SWANSEA MET    14PTS

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