With Covid’s most recent variant, Omicron, hanging over every planned social activity like the sword of Damocles, it was surprising and pleasing in equal measure to see a good number of our members drop down to the beach on Christmas Day morning for a surf, even if we could not gather for a sociable glass of wine, spirit or coffee to share the occasion post-surf. The waves were a fine festive gift for our surfers and the banner picture shows Otis, Harris and Caz arriving for the splash. Here are some of the other participants caught on camera – my apologies to any member who made the effort but was not found by my lens. We were grateful to be able to share the morning with friends in these troubled times and hope that we may see a safer outlook in the New Year and maybe a return to normality by the time we look to Christmas 2022.
Stay safe, everyone! Love and best wishes from Saints Boardriders.
On the last weekend of September, under balmy Autumn skies, we welcomed Minnow Green and his fellow longboarders to Tregenna Surf House. The club was honoured to host the Porthmeor Longboard Classic under the auspices of the British Longboard Union and offer a late season spectacular to the Porthmeor Beach crowd. Throughout a busy weekend of competition the surfers enjoyed pretty good waves and they treated us to some fine logging in the time-honoured manner. The largest entry was for the single-fin event – testament to the enduring pleasure of the style and elegance that good boardriding can offer.
There were a few of our local crew stepped up to have a go, and all performed very creditably against experienced longboard campaigners.
Travis and Matt were keen to ride the singlefins, while Teddy and Kaz joined in the U-16 boys. Eleanor was our sole girl competing on the weekend, giving a good account of herself in the U-18 girls.
The most successful Saints Boardriders was undoubtedly Teddy who battled through the rounds to the U-16 final, earning third place behind two of Britain’s most accomplished juniors. Well Done Teddy!
The junior girls finalists also demonstrated the full panoply of longboarding manoeuvres and it was noticeable and encouraging to see several of our local juniors trying some of those moves on their own boards a little way down from the competition area.
The outstanding performer of the weekend was Mike Lay, a West Cornwall longboarder. He is a familiar sight at Porthmeor and at Breakwater when it turns on, so he enjoyed vocal support from the local crew. He claimed both the Singlefin and the Mens Open titles on his return to competitive events after a long hiatus. And in accepting his trophy at the presentation he gave an elegant impromptu speech of affirmation of the camaraderie and bonhomie of the longboarding fraternity in this country and the British Longboarding Union itself in promoting the sport and the good fellowship of it’s practitioners. Saints Boardriders supports that philosophy and we hope we can share again with the British Longboard Union the buzz of a weekend of spirited competition in future seasons having thoroughly enjoyed the Porthmeor Longboard Classic first time around.
In closing Saints Boardriders and the British Longboard Union offer our thanks to the generosity of Down The Line, The Tregenna Castle Estate, St. Ives BID and Ocean And Earth for their sponsorship, and to Porthmeor Beach management for feeding the officials and organisers, and the Porthmeor RNLI lifeguards for their help in running a trouble-free event. Thanks too to the competitors for giving us a weekend of skilful competitive longboarding in the finest of sporting traditions. Let’s do it again!
That’s All Folks … was the farewell line as the cartoons finished on TV back in the day, and today’s blog signals the end of the Saturday Kids Club for another season. We left it in style with the largest attendance of the summer. While the younger groups worked with their coaches in polishing their techniques, the more advanced surfers had a chance to compete in a knockout under the professional judging rules and taste the experience of putting on the coloured rash vests and going head-to-head with their peers. Our first few pictures show some of those juniors working on their stances.
At the same time competition got underway for the seniors with the clubhouse balcony offering a fine view for our judges to score the waves in each heat.
Competition was fierce as the rounds progressed, and both the boys final and the girls required a close checking of the scores of our judges before the winners could be ascertained. In each case there were three surfers within a point of winning at the end of the contest.
Kaitlyn took the honours in the girls event, securing her first title after making the final on several occasions in the past. Our banner picture shows our newly-crowned champion receiving her trophy from the chairman. Teddy, likewise, took home the boys trophy, a well-earned result after some near-misses in the past.
We then repaired to the clubhouse to make the presentations and to celebrate the achievements of our youngsters this season. Each group awards accolades in three categories; Surfer of the Summer, Most Improved Surfer and Most Dedicated Surfer. There were more than a few damp eyes among coaches and parents as some of these presentations were made, and a real delight in everyone in the room to share in the joy of our young recipients.
The last picture shows Teddy receiving his trophy from our chairman to the general acclaim of the room.
In closing, I must offer the heartfelt thanks of Saints Boardriders to St. Ives Surf School for hosting those Saturday sessions, coaching our youngsters and for organising a splendid end-of-season competition yet again. Thanks also to our judges and to the morning admin desk and photographer for keeping the day in focus. Wood Paper Scissors made the wonderful medals which our participants were awarded on the day, and these greatly enriched the experience of our young chargers and help us celebrate our membership of the club. Porthmeor Beach have fed us and welcomed us warmly this year and many previous years, our gratitude to them is deep. The contribution of the parents is also a factor in building the spirit of the club and we are blessed with some great support in that department.
We look forward to re-convening around the beginning of June 2022 to welcome everyone back for another season of Kids Club and another summer of Saturday surfing!
As we reached the penultimate session for the season, it was felt that we should get a team photo as we were ready early for the surf. Of course, there are quite a few members missing, as any Saturday in the holiday season presents; but our banner picture has a fair few of the class of 2021.
The surfing itself was very good on the day – sweet little waves that allowed most kids to stroke themselves in with time to get up on the board. Our Sharks may have felt deprived of the bigger stuff that they prefer, but i did see some of them practicing cross-stepping and tandem riding and generally enjoying a longboard kind of vibe, so I’d say that all tastes were catered for on the morning.
Week two and we are blessed with fine surfing conditions again. Attendance was a little down due to a couple of Covid related scares in some school classes plus the once-in-a-lifetime hazard of road closures and diversions due to the world’s leaders meeting for a G7 summit in Carbis Bay! However, those who were able to get to Porthmeor had a fine old time as witnessed by some of our pictures below. I was particularly impressed by the Sharks group this morning. They were hitting the lip hard and seemed to be competing to see who could pull off the most outrageous layback. Here’s a flavour of the scene, with a random waterborne message concerning the protection of the ocean which passed across the beach during the session.
Twenty months or so after our last Saturday morning gathering we were finally able to get together, reconnect with our junior surfers and get Kids Club 2021 on the road. It was a chilly, misty morning, which may have been a disincentive to some, but those who got to the beach for the session had some peachy low-tide waves to work with and an enthusiastic bunch of coaches and parents to cheer them on. It was great to welcome back some familiar faces and equally to greet some new members and introduce them to the delights of surfing. The pictures below have a flavour of what went down on the morning.
Here’s St. Ives Surf School’s salute to the new year which I’d like to share with the members and supporters of saints boardriders. Harris and his coaching team are a mainstay of our club and we thank them wholeheartedly and wish them a fabulous 2020!
And those good wishes go out to all our members, supporters and friends too. Happy New Year!
A pleasant Christmas Day morning greeted our 2019 cohort of celebration surfers and supporters. It was a well-attended affair, though my pictures may not do it justice as the attendance was spread between the clubhouse, the surf school and the waters’ edge, and I caught only those in or down by the water with my camera. However, with my apologies made – and hopefully accepted – here are those attendees that I saw:
The waves offered plenty of opportunities for all abilities, and there are a few examples below of what we saw on the day. saints boardriders wishes all our members and supporters a healthy and prosperous 2020. Cheers!
We came together for the final kids Club of the season last Saturday to celebrate another successful campaign, gauge our progress and give the Dolphins a chance to show off their competitive streak and give just one girl and one boy the chance to claim the title ‘Champion 2019″. The younger groups took to the water for a last coaching session of the summer, impressing us with their confident skills, and maybe hoping to catch the coach’s eye and claim an award too.
Meanwhile, further along the beach, the girls competition was underway, studied from the balcony of the clubhouse by our judging panel led by Minnow Green of Surfing Great Britain. The first semi final was distinguished by Senara’s bomb of a ride from a heavy take off out back right in to the beach where her big smile told us she was rightly pleased with herself!
The girls finalists grace our banner picture and they put on a great show. It was a close affair throughout and the last few minutes were a mad scramble to get that one outstanding wave that could put the event beyond doubt.
Next up, the boys final found the conditions somewhat messier as the tide dropped out and required a quick reassessment of tactics to find the best scoring waves.
Ollie stuck to the timeworn strategy of looking for the bombs from out back to nail the heat. Tim and Caz varied their attacks between the big green stuff and the inside reformed waves. Teddy had a quick look out back and decided to come inside and let his quick surfing and nimble turns do his talking.
At the final hooter we all repaired to the clubhouse to learn who had won the trophies for 2019. Surfer of the Summer, Most Improved and Most Committed were the categories for the younger groups and our chairman, Steve had the privilege of awarding them to the surfers selected by their coaches.
Minnow then took the floor to enthuse members with his report of the recent ISA World Surfing games in Japan, which will also host the inaugural Olympic surfing competition.
He then had the honour of asking the girls finalists to come back to the centre stage to receive their trophies. Last up, and thus our champion for 2019 was Eleanor! All three judges had her just a half point better than Senara in the final. Then the nervous wait was over for the boys and they could learn their result. Teddy was last to be called this time, earning a just reward for a summer spent doing little else but catching waves. Well done to all our competitors! It was a pleasure to witness the skill, endeavour and sportsmanship on display out there.
Our thanks are due to Minnow, Neil, Jack and Eve for judging the event, and to Porthmeor Beach for feeding the competitors on the day. More generally, we are indebted as always to St. Ives Surf School whose coaches lead our sessions every Saturday, to Porthmeor Beach lifeguards for their unstinting support and to Porthmeor Beach management for the nourishment and welcome we find there every time. Parents and helpers are also an invaluable resource to the club and praise is due to them too!
And I end with the welcome news that the 2019 Surfers Ball is just around the corner on 25th October. Tickets are on sale now at the clubhouse or at Tregenna Castle, price £30. Small Wonder headline this year’s entertainment, along with DJ Chewy, Tom Quirke’s jazz in the lobby, roulette and blackjack in the casino, those red carpet photos and a photo booth, the big ticket auction and, of course, a sumptuous meal into the bargain. Let’s get dressed up and come out to play!
Once again we were welcomed to a sweet September morning, as captioned to our blog last week! Seventy plus kids turned up to enjoy the fruits of this late-season swell. Today’s banner picture shows the Dolphins group and some of our coaches about to hit the water for their session – I hope you weren’t led to the site expecting to see their cetacean cousins as they don’t appear this week! There are dolphins and some surfers belonging to other fishy-named groups in our gallery below.