Competition Heats Up At The Billabong Grom Series Whangamata
For immediate release:
Competition Heats Up At The Billabong Grom Series Whangamata
Five of the six division winners at the Whangamata leg of the Billabong Grom Series presented by Oceanbridge repeated the dose yesterday (Sunday 24th February) with class performances that saw them match results from the first event held at Mount Maunganui three weeks ago.
Kehu Butler (Mnt), Jasmine Smith (Gis), Tane Bowden (WGM) and Raiha Ensor (Mnt) all won their respect divisions, Bowden winning two. Teina Smith (Mnt) was the only new champion winning the Under 12 Girls Division with the final day being played out in clean 1.0m waves and light onshore winds.
Butler, who was surfing up an age group led his final from start to finish. Butler posted 13.2 out of a possible 20 points in the final. The only time his lead was challenged was in the final thirty seconds when Harrison Whiteside (Chch) completed two big powerful manoeuvres to score a 7.1 point ride – the highest of the final but short of the 8.5 point ride required for the win.
“Yeah I was kinda shaking a little bit and I was like ‘oh no’ when he got that last ride” said Butler in reference to Whiteside’s last wave.
“I am just happy to win again, I had fun at Whanga, I always do and I am looking forward to Piha ‘cause there are always waves there too, I want to finish the series with another good result” added Butler.
Whiteside finished the final in second place which was a vast improvement on his semifinal finish at the first event. Isaac Kettle (Tara) placed third in the final which was one better than the first event of the series while Callum Chuter (Mnt) made his first final at this level of competition and finished fourth.
The Under 16 Girls Final was the closest of the day with the lead swinging several times before Jasmine Smith (Gis) zeroed in on her second straight win in the series. Smith finished with a 10.50 point heat total, her last two waves scoring 4.9 and a 5.63.
“This is my last Billabong Grom Series event ever so I wanted to win so bad. It was one of my goals to win two events this year because I can’t make the final event” said Smith who will be absent from event three, the event clashing with the Surf Life Saving Nationals.
Smith had found herself in fourth place midway through the final struggling to get any decent waves. At that point Claudia Fraser (Piha) held the lead before Abby Falwasser – Logan (Gis) also held the lead for a brief period. Falwasser – Logan eventually finished in second place ahead of Fraser in third and Kea Smith (Mnt) in fourth.
The second of two wins for local surfer Tane Bowden came in the Under 14 Boys Division.
“This is the best winning streak ever for me” said a modest Bowden. “Kehu has been beating me for the last few years so it is good to get a couple of wins on him.”
Bowden looked strong all weekend and in the final he continued to throw his tail and push his turns a much as possible. “I have been focusing on getting my turns in and working on my power surfing” said Bowden who scored 16.23 points in the final and claimed that these two wins are better than the first two because it shows that it is no fluke.
It was indeed Butler that finished the final in second place on 11.40 points. Daniel Farr (Tara) finished third with 9.83 after scoring a 7.0 for one of his rides but coming up short on a good second ride. Lee Ririnui (Mnt) finished the final in fourth place.
The stronghold Mount Maunganui has on the girls side of surfing was never more evident than in the Under 14 Girls Division that was filled with four of their surfers. It was Raiha Ensor that made it two wins from two events scoring 11.80 points in the final. Ensor had another battle with Kea Smith who finished with 10.43 points and a runner up finish. Maaia Reid – Bennett placed third in the final ahead of Elin Tawharu in fourth.
Tane Bowden (WGM) claimed his first of two wins in the Under 12 Boys with a massive 15.90 points. Bowden took no mercy on his less experienced opponents as he warmed up for his big Under 14 Boys Final match up. Luke Griffin (Mnt) placed second in the final ahead of James Ririnui (Mnt) in third and Josef Jungwirth (Gis) in fourth.
Teina Smith (Mnt) dominated the Under 12 Girls Final charging out the back and catching several long waves on her own. Grace Pevats (Whangarei) also took some big take offs unassisted and despite a few hefty wipeouts, showed amazing courage to finish in second place. Third went to first time competitor Georgia Humprheys from the Wairarapa ahead of Iritana Butler (Mnt) in fourth.Set out below are final results from the second event of the Billabong Grom Series presented by Oceanbridge completed at Whangamata yesterday (Sunday 24th February).
Under 16 Boys
Callum Chuter (Tau), 11.20, 1, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 10.70, 2, Te Rapai Barbarich Love (Tara), 9.17, 3, Travis Morton (Waihi Bch), 7.77, 4
Kehu Butler (Arataki), 14.47, 1, Isaac Kettle (Tara), 11.40, 2, Taylor Hutchison (Rag), 8.80, 3, Manu Scott-Arrieta (Sandy Bay), 7.30, 4
Under 16 Boys Final
Kehu Butler (Arataki), 13.17, 1, Harrison Whiteside (ChCh), 11.43, 2, Isaac Kettle (Tara), 8.07, 3, Callum Chuter (Tau), 6.27, 4
Under 14 Boys Round of 16
Kehu Butler (Arataki), 13.5, 1, Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 8, 2, Taine Craig Ranga (Waihi Bch), 4.37, 3, William Barnes (Mnt), 1.47, 4
Thomas Dixon-Smith (Gis), 7.9, 1, Reef Matthews (Waitara), 6.23, 2, Jared Gebert (Ohope), 5.23, 3, Joel Clegg (Tara), 4.7, 4
Daniel Farr (Tara), 10.67, 1, Tane Bowden (Whmata), 6.33, 2, Samuel Sands (ChCh), 5.23, 3, Connor Seaman (Auck), 4.7, 4
Shane Kraus (Piha), 13.87, 1, Jonas Tawharu (Mnt), 12.17, 2, Reuben Mottart (Gis), 6.77, 3, Braedyn Louie (Piha), 6.53, 4
Under 14 Boys Semifinals
Kehu Butler (Arataki), 18.17, 1, Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 9.37, 2, Thomas Dixon-Smith (Gis), 8.65, 3, Reef Matthews (Waitara), 7.97, 4
Tane Bowden (Whmata), 15.67, 1, Daniel Farr (Tara), 11.4, 2, Jonas Tawharu (Mnt), 10.50, 3, Shane Kraus (Piha), 10.33, 4
Under 14 Boys Final
Tane Bowden (Whmata), 16.23, 1, Kehu Butler (Arataki), 11.40, 2, Daniel Farr (Tara), 9.83, 3, Lee Ririnui (Mnt), 7.13, 4
Under 12 Boys Semifinals
Luke Griffin (Mt), 7.73, 1, James Ririnui (Mnt), 7.67, 2, James Scott (Coro), 4.97, 3, Caleb Cutmore (Ham), 4.67, 4
Tane Bowden (Whmata), 14.40, 1, Josef Jungwirth (Gis), 4.97, 2, William van der Beek (Mnt), 4.67, 3, Finn Johnson (Gis), 3.60, 4
Under 12 Boys Final
Tane Bowden (Whmata), 15.90, 1, Luke Griffin (Mt), 6.77, 2, James Ririnui (Mnt), 5.80, 3, Josef Jungwirth (Gis), 5.07, 4
Under 16 Girls Semifinals
Abby Falwasser - Logan (Gis), 10.93, 1, Kea Smith (Mnt), 9.0, 2, Britt Kindred (Muri), 6.80, 3, Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 6.33, 4
Jasmine Smith (Gis), 11.13, 1, Claudia Fraser (Auck), 10.19, 2, Dayna Story (Gis), 8.93, 3, Maaia Reid-Bennett (Arataki), 5.30, 4
Under 16 Girls Final
Jasmine Smith (Gis), 10.53, 1, Abby Falwasser - Logan (Gis), 10.0, 2, Claudia Fraser (Auck), 9.17, 3, Kea Smith (Mnt), 8.17, 4
Under 14 Girls Quarterfinals
Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 8.43, 1, Maaia Reid-Bennett (Arataki), 7.4, 2, Zhana Hutchieson (Waitara), 4.43, 3, Tiana Breeze - de Mooij (Mnt), 3.8, 4
Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 9.5, 1, Holly Marson-Wood (Piha), 2.33, 2, Treyarn Barbarich (Arataki), 0.33, 3
Kea Smith (Mnt), 7, 1, Ella Jungwirth (Gis), 5.2, 2, Amber Bailey (Auck), 3.13, 3, Teata Barbaich-Love (Arataki), 2.33, 4
Under 14 Girls Semifinals
Maaia Reid-Bennett (Arataki), 9.83, 1, Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 7.2, 2, Holly Marson-Wood (Piha), 2.83, 3
Kea Smith (Mnt), 11.5, 1, Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 10.7, 2, Ella Jungwirth (Gis), 4.9, 3
Under 14 Girls Final
Raiha Ensor (Mnt), 11.8, 1, Kea Smith (Mnt), 10.43, 2, Maaia Reid-Bennett (Arataki), 7.9, 3, Elin Tawharu (Mnt), 6.58, 4
Under 12 Girls Final
Teina Smith (Tau), 13.17, 1, Grace Pevats (Whrei), 11.57, 2, Georgia Humphreys (Wairarapa), 9.87, 3, Iritana Butler (Arataki), 4.30, 4
Please see below for the date of the final event:
Billabong Grom Series pres by Oceanbridge Event 3
– 9th – 10th March, Piha Beach,
The Surfing New Zealand event hotline is 0211134506. This will be updated daily at approximately 7am with venue, divisions contested and conditions for the day.
Generous support from Billabong, Oceanbridge, Von Zipper, Palmers and Kustom has made this event possible.
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Kehu Butler Under 16 Boys Winner