WESTERN Australia's newest surfing stars put on a show south of Geraldton over the weekend, with five State Champions crowned at the third and final event of the WA Junior Surfing Titles presented by SunSmart.
Surfers from all corners of the state made the most of sensational winter conditions at Flat Rocks, with 3-4 feet (two-metre) surf pounding the shallow reef and providing a challenge for male and female competitors aged between eight and 17 years of age.
The Batavia coastline played host to 80 competitors who battled to qualify for the 2017 Australian Junior Surfing Titles in Culburra Beach, NSW.
Margaret River’s Jack Haslau captured his maiden State Championship in the blue ribbon Under 18 Junior Boy’s division, adding his name to the honour roll of past winners that includes; Jacob Willcox, Creed McTaggart, and Jack Robinson.
Using the powerful waves to his advantage, Haslau put on a one-man demolition derby in a high scoring and entertaining Under 18’s final.
Using his razor sharp backhand attack, Haslau dropped two excellent scores to amass a combined total of 17.37 (from a possible 20), to claim his second victory of the series after also winning at Trigg Beach last month.
Haslau was constantly challenged for the win by Ben Gradisen (Gracetown), Josh Cattlin (Yallingup) and Jolan Bonelli (Margaret River), who all surfed amazingly.
“I’m so stoked to come away with the win and the state title,” Haslau said. “I didn’t really expect it but I’m stoked to be standing here. I loved competing at the Aussie Titles and I can’t wait to get back there in 2017.”
Carnarvon’s Coral Durant won the Under 18 Junior Girl’s final with a combined total of 14.84. After competing in a run of recent events on the east coast, Durant used her fresh competition form to edge out Pemba Spargo (Albany), Arabelle Gibson (Margaret River) and Emma Cattlin (Yallingup).
“I haven’t surf at Flat Rocks that much, but it’s really good to be back competing over a reef break with some power,” Durant said.
Despite the fourth place finish, Emma Cattlin claimed the Under 18 Girl’s State Championship, after dominating the opening events in Margaret River and Trigg Beach.
In other results from the weekend, Emma Cattlin (Yallingup) proved she’s a force to be reckoned with at the National Titles, clean sweeping the Under 16 Cadet Girls division with her third straight victory in the series. Cattlin scored the events only perfect 10-point ride used her powerful and precise backhand repertoire to dispose of Coral Durant (Carnarvon), Maddie Cawood (Margaret River) and Holly Minter (Albany).
“I’m over the moon right now, I can’t even describe it, its like a dream come true,” Cattlin said. “I’ve been working hard this year and the national titles is a challenge I’m really looking forward to.”
Macklin Flynn (Mandurah) was a popular winner and proved he’s a star on the rise, claiming his first State Championship with victory in the Under 12 Micro-Groms. The close fought win came over Otis North (Yallingup) and brothers Maverick and Phoenix Wilson (Mandurah).
Forecast: Wednesday has a massive 6m swell on the way with NW winds, the large 4.5m swell holds into Thursday with W winds and similar conditions on Friday but smaller 2.9m swell. The weekend brings onshore SW to W winds and a 2m plus swell.
Hotspot: Castle Rock on Wednesday.