CHAMP: Phoenix rises to claim surfing title
HE MAY be one of Yamba's littlest surfers, but Phoenix Talbot is already rising in the ranks.
The seven-year-old goofy footer took out the under-8 mixed division of the Woolworths Surfer Groms Comp held in Coffs Harbour on Sunday - his first ever competition outside his home Angourie Boardriders.
And it's not just the judges eye Phoenix has caught, with local board shaper Luke Short spotting his skills on the home breaks, sponsoring the youngster with a LSD custom board.
"His surfing has really gone to the next level since the new board, we've definitely noticed the improvement," mother Hayley Talbot said.
"He was so excited to be in his first competition, and for him to win, it was really cute."
Phoenix went up against other grommets in his age division from Forster to Tweed Heads, and carved out an 8.00 point ride in the first of his finals to take the win.
"It was really special, and by the end he was so surfed out. He'd had a real run day surfing," Hayley said.
Hayley said Phoenix was keen to move onto some Ripcurl Gromsearch events when they were allowed to compete again, and had his eyes set on a long future in surfing.
"It's his dream, it's what he wants to do," Hayley said.
"He's lucky, we're very spoilt for mentors for him growing up here."
More than 70 competitors took part in the event, which will be held in regional areas across the country.