Swell success for Valley's wave riders
SURFING: Chasing Billabong Oz Grom Cup glory, Angourie brothers Dakoda and Harley Walters made their intentions clear in murky 3-4ft swell.
The pair topped the opening heats earlier this week in their respective divisions with powerful performances at Park Beach in Coffs Harbour.
After a set of punching cut-backs and drawn-out carves, Dakoda notched a combined wave score of 18.4 (out of 20) in the blue ribbon 16-and-under division earning straight passage into today's third round.
It was a different style of surfing that caught the attention of the judges and dad, Jeremy, said it instilled a lot of confidence in the emergent waverider.
"Dakoda is more known for doing aerials, but he got really great scores and didn't get into the air at all,” Walters said. "That is a really good sign for him and I think he will take a lot away from that.”
With a mountain of heats to get through, Surfing NSW split the Park Beach shore into separate zones with Harley's 12-and-under heat moved into the protected, flatter north corner.
Despite the smaller surf, Harley managed to show his ability to string together move sets punching out a heat-topping 15.83 combined wave score, earning straight passage to the third round.
While both boys topped their divisions, Walters said his sons were not getting ahead of themselves.
"Harley has won this event before, and Dakoda has made it to the quarters,” he said. "They know there is still plenty of surfing to do before they win the title.
"They surfed really well but anything can happen.”
Wooli super grommet Carly Shanahan also kicked off her Oz Grom Cup campaign on Wednesday with the 14-and-under top chance clinching victory in her first heat.
The Wooli grom surfed her quarter-final yesterday afternoon but with time running out, organisers finished the heat early and will finish it this morning.
Shanahan sits outside the top two, and needs a wave score of 4.27 to progress to the finals on Saturday.