Locals live up at J Bay
IT WAS great to see two of the Far North Coast's top prospects line up for a shot at wild card selection into the Billabong Pro at Jeffreys Bay this week. Angourie's Laurie Towner and Lennox Head's James Wood featured in the second of three heats, with the winner of each getting a coveted start in the World Championship Tour event. Unfortunately, South Africa's Damian Fahrenfort replaced countryman Jordy Smith and then went on to easily win the heat and secure the wild card start, with Wood and Towner finishing second and third. Meanwhile, Byron Bay's Danny Wills was having a scorcher of a time in the main event, totalling up the highest scores and taking out world No 2, Hawaii's Andy Irons. However, the event was beset by poor conditions mid-week, putting everything on hold.
THE final 2005-2006 Australian Longboard Circuit ratings have been released this week. Chelsea Williams (Gold Coast) won the Women's ALC, while Emerald Beach's Harley Ingleby took out the Men's. Far North Coast surfers have also made a fair impact on this year's proceedings, especially the women, with Kirsty Webster (Banora Point) finishing second and Lisa Nicholson, also of Banora Point, third. Byron Bay duo Tessa Davidson and Angela King were not far behind in sixth and 12th places, while there was a little distance then to Anne Watts (Lennox Head) 21st, Nava Young (Angourie) 25th and Haylie Doyle (Tweed Heads) 30th. In the Men's ALC, Lennox Head's Mitch Sheehy finished seventh, with Ruben Roxburgh (Evans Head) 12th, Hayden Swan (Byron Bay) 19th, Scott Channon (Lennox Head) 24th, Nick Mason (Suffolk Park) 26th, Ben Johnson (Cabarita) 28th, Ray Gleave (Kingscliff) 29th and Michael Black (Byron Bay) 36th.
FEDERAL-BASED surf band Mal and The Longboarders went on surfari to Western Australia earlier this month. The band performed at the Whalebone Classic event at Cottesloe in Perth by night and joined the throng of competitors in the surf during the days. Not only a big hit on the dance floor, the band and their families also cleaned up quite well at the presentation ceremony. Mark Donovan won the Happiest Competitor award, perhaps because his daughters Bonnie and Kirralee Donovan did so well. Kirralee was awarded the Wahine Award and finished fourth in the Open Women, while Bonnie nailed second place in the Under-18 Girls. Jackson Lovell finished fourth in the Under-18s at the Whalebone at Cottesloe Beach, while his father Gary, the lead singer of Mal and The Longboarders won a Steve Del Rosso Clearwater longboard in the competitors draw.
BYRON Bay's bohemian surfer, film-maker and muso, Johnny Abegg, has plenty on the go at the moment with the On Credit film scheduled to screen in Hawaii and California next month. His website www.jcainternational.com is worth a look, with lots of local, surf-related bits and pieces to dig through. Abegg is also doing freelance film work, editing and soundtrack work for FUEL TV and local businesses. If anyone wants promotional video work done or any of the above, you can contact Johnny via his website.
Another happy muso
HERE'S a bit more on the subject of surf music. Beau Young has a new CD-DVD on the way called Still, which has already been released in Japan. Australia will follow in August. He has also had some of his songs included on the sound track of a new Australian movie, 48 Shades (based on the award winning novel 48 Shades of Brown by author Nick Earls), which is due for release at the same time. You can check out the movie trailer at http://www.48shadesmovie.com.au Meanwhile, back in Japan, Warner Music has released a compilation titled Beautiful Songs with the likes of James Blunt, David Gray, Oasis, Jet and Beau Young's Peace Be With You selected for the album. Yes, he still surfs as hard as ever and recently did a surf trip to Indonesia with photographer Simon Williams, smooth and experimental wave rider and musician David Rastovich, bluesman and surf lover Ash Grunwald, fish surfboard master Daniel Thompson and film-maker Cyrus Sutton. That's the way to do it, create the soundtrack while you're doing the surfing.
2006 Lennox Longboard Classic, August 5 and 6. Inquiries to Wayne Booth on 66 877 921.
IT LOOKS like another weekend with plenty of swell, but with the wind tending to the SE and E, although not too strong at around 10-15 knots. Hit he beach early to avoid blown-out conditions, but be warned that the swell is expected to be still up around the 2m mark and more. Let's hope it's little more productive than last weekend.