As the exceptional spell of high pressure and warm weather has brought us successive weekends of small but rippable surf for our junior surfers, we have maintained those high attendances and kept the stoke going. The friendly conditions have enabled us to introduce our newest members to the elements of surfing technique needed to both speed up the board and to slow down, as well as trim frontside and backside. It’s such a joy to see them practising and honing these basic skills. Here’s a gallery of shots from those most recent sessions;
Once the judges had seen the teams in their finery, it was off round the town on the traditional parade. Through the Digey, along Fore Street, down Lifeboat Hill, along the harbour and back to Porthmeor for the surfing element to commence. With only ankle-biter waves, and few even of those, it didn’t present the spectacle that previous editions have offered, although the contestants gamely tried the reverse take-offs, switch foot manoeuvres and headstands which have become the currency of progressive teams in the Shootout story.
Here’s a gallery of the day as it developed:
Somewhere in the middle of proceedings we managed to take a break while England won a World Cup football game, before running the final in the smallest, glassiest wave of the day. And then it was all round to The Balcony to wrap up the day with the prizegiving and to get our rocks off to the sweet soul sounds of our favourites, The Sandy Acres Seven. Here’s the gallery that brings the day to a conclusion.
Our thanks are due to Harris and the crew of St. Ives Surf School for another fabulous edition of the Swellboard Shootout. Thanks also to Porthmeor Beach for hosting the event and feeding the participants. Thanks to our volunteer lifeguards, our judges and Pete for bringing an element of order to the day. A big thank you to Maurice Symons of The Sloop Inn for the £200 prize for the Fancy Dress winners, and to Swell for the gift of a swellboard which was awarded to Luciana and Flavio for their selfless contribution to the running of saints boardriders. Thanks to Red Bull for their continuing support of our event, and thanks to the Sandy Acres Seven for bringing the whole day to a rocking finale! We love it!
An all-star super group of Freddie Mercury, Elton John, Iggy Pop and The Artist Formerly Known As Giacomo performed at Porthmeor Beach in the seventh edition of our annual Swellboard Shootout – but were they the stand-out act? There was glorious Sunday sunshine, but only the suggestion of a wave, as we gathered before the judges to parade the teams and process through St. Ives for the wider appreciation of the town before getting down to the semi-serious business of fancy-dress surfing. Have a look at our teams in the gallery below and choose your favourite fancy dress. You’ll learn of our judges’ decision later.
Stay tuned for the next instalment of the 2018 Swellboard Shootout extravaganza!
A small but rideable swell greeted us on Saturday morning at Porthmeor. Beautiful warm weather with no wind allowed eighty plus surfers to enjoy a mellow session and polish our skills. The younger groups were able to practice their pop-ups and even find time to trim along the waves in such favourable conditions. Happy Days! Here are some pics from the session, including a sneaky practice for tomorrow’s Swellboard Shootout competition by an unnamed instructor.
Saturday 9th of June was the first Kids Club of the season, and 99 eager surfers answered the call. Add in the instructors the helpers and the admin crew and that amounts to over 130 people enjoying the balmy morning, with just enough surf to give the newbies a gentle introduction to the sport but some bigger peelers out back for those returning members to rediscover their mojo. With such fine weather, decent surf and a chance to catch up with old friends, it was a successful day all round. The gallery below captures some of the action.
Grand National Day 2018, and our banner picture shows some of the runners and riders who completed the course. No !! Not the Aintree course, but the grand sweep of St. Ives and it’s beaches covered by the Big Spring Beach Clean of 2018! An annual event on the Surfers Against Sewage calendar, the beach clean has always found an enthusiastic following in St. Ives, and 2018 was no exception. Led by Harris Rothschild of St. Ives Surf School, the volunteers split into two groups and harvested the marine coastal litter from opposing ends of the town. One group began at Porthmeor West, the other at Porthminster Point and they came together on the harbour slipway with their hauls. It was a relaxing and social way to spend a fine Spring morning, and the benefit to the environment can be gauged from the the amount of trash collected in the bags and buckets at the end of the exercise. The Coffee Lounge on Tregenna Hill offered free coffee vouchers for participants and a prize bag for the most enthusiastic beachcomber, which went to Eve Dudley. The gallery below shows some of those who answered the call to help polish the jewel that is our heritage here in St. Ives. Many thanks to all who participated, and please, all readers of this blog, help keep our coastline free of litter – it is hazardous to wildlife as well as a blight on our beautiful environment.
The last day of September and the last day of term for the Kids Club. The morning followed the usual awards day format with the youngest groups completing a normal session while the older ones competed for a prize under international judging rules. Here’s some of the action:
Porthmeor Beach takeaway served up a complimentary dish of hot food, a hot chocolate and a bag of sweets for each competitor before we gathered for the prize giving. The junior groups saw three awards per group: Most Improved Surfer, Most Enthusiastic Surfer and Surfer Of The Summer, while the seniors’ awards went to the winners of the day’s competition. Pictures below! Our thanks to Porthmeor Beach, St. Ives Surf School, Porthmeor RNLI Lifeguards and the many volunteers who give their time freely at every surf club event. Further thanks are due to Tregenna Castle and The Balcony Bar for their sponsorship and support. We have boogied to Sandy Acres Seven and The Mosquitoes on fundraising nights, and rattled our collecting tins at Tescos in following our grand vision of building a clubhouse. Our thanks to them too! Next up is our Surfers Ball at Tregenna Castle on the 20th of October. Tickets are still available, but they’re going fast. Buy early to avoid disappointment. And so to the awards;
So, it only remains to thank everyone who helped make this extravaganza happen! Harris and the crew of St. Ives Surf School are both the brains and the heavy lifting behind the event. Friday evening came courtesy of Porthmeor Beach West’s fish tacos, Frankie Davies and Ben Warner. Saturday’s show was hosted by Cohort Hostel, films by Red Bull and curries by Ruby Murrays. Sunday was organised by St. Ives Surf School, lifeguarded by the RNLI, marshalled by Pete Mitchell, fed by Captain Carlos of Porthmeor Beach Takeaway, entertained by the music of the Red Bull truck and filmed by Senara of On The Beach Productions. See Here!
Proceeds raised over the weekend will go to Surfers Against Sewage, the RNLI and saints boardriders clubhouse fund.
Many many thanks to each and everyone of the above for bringing about another great edition of the Swellboard Shootout. Let’s do it again next year! Here’s a miscellany of portraits from Sunday. Cheers!
And so to the Balcony for the prize-giving and the partying! First up, Dom Ferris of Surfers Against Sewage gave a rallying speech reminding us of the great work his organisation does on behalf of all of us who use and value our oceans. Then The Giraffes were awarded first prize for their artfully realised costumes. The judges were impressed by the craft element and home-made endeavour in their choice – a pointer to next years entrants that store-bought is short of the mark. Next, an award for outstanding surfer of the day, taken, to popular acclaim, by Mike Lay. His longboard prowess transferred very well to the lengthy rides that a swellboard can offer and we were treated to a masterclass all day long. Finally, the St. Ives Surf School Circus Team collected the winners trophy for their success in the grand final. A strong costume element and a bag-of-tricks surfing element brought the trophy home to Porthmeor again. We were delighted to have the Sandy Acres Seven on stage to bring the evening to a climax, and the crowd had filled the dance floor to capacity before the first number was half way through! Watermelon Man, into Nothing But A Houseparty then Osibisa’s anthemic Sunshine Day and the joint was jumpin’. Great times as always to see out another Swellboard Shootout weekend.
Once it came to the surfing, each team carried its fancy dress score into every heat. The quality of surfing was variable, to say the least – there were several very game non-surfers entered into the event as well as a few with national and international recognition in the shortboard and longboard ranks! The twenty or so teams were whittled down to a four team final through the rounds, and by then it was surfing skill that would win it.
Here’s a gallery of what happened!
Still to come: the After-Party and a portrait gallery.