Wooli grommet Carly Shanahan has surfed her way into the Rip Curl Grom Search finals.
Wooli grommet Carly Shanahan has surfed her way into the Rip Curl Grom Search finals. Ethan Smith/Surfing NSW

Wooli's princess of the surf qualifies for national finals

SURFING: Wooli's princess of surfing Carly Shanahan is guaranteed to paddle out in the Ripcurl GromSearch national final next month, following her performance in the Sunshine Coast heats last week.

The last heat of the series saw mixed wave conditions, and by the time Shanahan donned her red competition jersey for the Under 14 girls competition on Thursday, the swell had dropped off drastically.

She came out on top in her round two heat against Shaye Leeuwendal, Sai Maniwa and Armanie Barber, but bowed out in the third round.

It didn't matter though - mum Melanie said all her daughter needed to do to secure her finals spot was show up.

"The whole point of that one was to qualify for national final,” she said.

"They take six kids in and she's qualified at number three.

"She would have liked to have gone all the way through but the surf was terrible, and she wasn't going to hassle anyone knowing that she just needed to get to the final.”

There are five heat rounds in the GromSearch, all in different states.

Most young competitors enter three events a year, but Shanahan cemented her finals spot after just two events.

It was her second place in Maroubra in September that really sealed the deal, Melanie said.

"She's really excited. Her goal was to get to the national finals, she really wants to do well at that one.”

Australia's Ripcurl GromSearch final will take place at North Narrabeen from January 16-18.

Shanahan will then go on to surf for Coffs Harbour in the Australian Boardriders Battle final in Newcastle the next day.



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