So we move into the final month of the Kids Club season and September brings a very surfable wave on a blustery Saturday morning. As so often this summer, conditions were favourable for our most advanced surfers, the Dolphins, and there were twenty of them checked in for the ride! Conversely, the second session saw the tide filling in rapidly and the Nemos found themselves bodyboarding in deepening water instead of the Swelly rides they might have expected. Nevertheless, a good time was had by all as evidenced below. Our banner picture today has instructor Burger resolving his choice of craft mid-ride after initial indecision. Or something like that!
It’s the last day of August, the last Kids Club before the school year begins and there is a distinct chill in the early morning air. An Autumn swell is rolling in to Porthmeor offering some chest-high waves out back as well as the long runners that we find inside on the falling tide. Both the Nemos and the Dorys are given a brisk warm-up to get the muscles ready and the minds psyched before launching. Out on the green waves, the Dolphins, reduced in number by the absence of those members contesting the Rip Curl Gromsearch in Newquay, are battling heavy paddle-outs to earn the right to ride those bigger waves back in. It’s a challenge, and it’s fun!
Friday 19th October saw a new addition to the local surfing calendar, courtesy of St. Ives Surf School. An open competition for St. Ives surfers was held at Porthmeor Beach in front of a sizeable crowd of surfers and surf fans. It was heartening to see how many good surfers we have in the town – and there are quite a few more who were unable to make this comp at such short notice! Held under international judging rules, but with each surfer having been awarded a handicap according to their ability – the event was designed to give everyone an opportunity to advance through their heat, and thus encourage everyone to push his surfing to the limit.
It was a rapid-fire event as the 4pm start left little time to complete proceedings before dark. Six-man heats and not a moment lost between heats led us to a four man final as the light faded. The judges re-located to the waters edge to get a close-up on a thrillingly tight climax to the day.
Here are some of the faces on show- my apologies to those competitors my lens missed!
There was a nerve-wracking interlude as the judges checked and re-checked their scores from the final. The result was clearly a close-run affair!
And then we were ready. First trophy to be decided was Kook of the Day. Giacomo took the honours on this one for running over a grom during his heat. Here he is receiving his award from Teddy.
Next up was, perhaps a little more coveted – Move of the Day! Jayce took this for the most outrageous of the several airs that were landed during the contest. Here he is receiving his trophy from Caz!
And so to the winner and first holders of the St. Ives Cup. Harry De Roth claimed the prize, from Adam Bayfield in second, Jayce third and the evergreen veteran Tim Whitefield fourth.
Well done Harry!
Below are our finalists taking a bow. And before we go, we must thank Harris and St. Ives Surf School for another great occasion. This will, I’m sure, be the start of a new tradition in the town. The St. Ives Cup is here to stay. YAY!
There was an Autumnal feel to the air for Kids Club this week. A chilly Westerly and some chunkier waves out back brought a challenge to our more advanced surfers, while the Nemos and Dorys kept to the inside, smaller waves to continue their own concentration on techniques required for pop-ups, trimming and turning. There was a chance before the session began to gather our volunteer coaches and some of the other members who make Kids Club happen – here’s a photo tribute to you guys!
And there are others who were busy on check-in duties and other ancillary stuff who didn’t make this photo call but also deserve our thanks for their contributions to the Saturday morning vibe!
When we got down to the surfing business, there were three elements of the session that are manifest in the picture gallery below. CONCENTRATION, LEARNING and FUN. We had a great time, coaches and surfers all. And that is what a club is about!
The fine summer continued throughout the end of school term and we again found ourselves with balmy weather and a small wave for the club on 14th July. It was a further opportunity to work with the coaches on trimming along the wave and on speeding up and slowing down.
The following week saw the first break in the weather with a cold, wet start to the 9 o’clock session. Harris led the Nemos with an exposition of how to finish a wave as the section closes out. It was a tall order for some of those little tackers to take on, but they gamely gave it a go. There’s another skill to practise in the school holidays! The pictures below are from that most recent session.
Videographer, Greg Dennis was also on hand shooting a couple of interviews with some of our members for a video section to support the club’s fundraising effort on the JustGiving website. You can donate, or just check it out here. All help is gratefully received!
And so, finally, after a frustrating four months delay, our clubhouse project springs back to life! We won’t rake over the litany of negotiations regarding warranties, legal charges, car park charges and the mere time that these things take. Instead we’ll celebrate the fact that we are on site and things are happening. The picture below shows the first steps in the process as the toilet block is demolished.
By the day’s end there remained a pile of rubble to be removed and recycled. An information board has been erected at the site to bring the community abreast of what’s happening – see the proposed layout below
It was a particular pleasure to gather together at the end of the first day on site many of the people and organisations who are instrumental in making it happen. This final picture by Susie Excell of Tregenna Castle shows some of those build partners .
Our traditional Christmas Day bash saw it’s largest ever attendance. There was a friendly wave for those taking to the water and a welcoming array of beverages both hot and alcoholic – and sometimes both – for those enjoying the gathering on dry land. There were a few of our Saturday club nippers answering the call as well as a strong contingent of St. Ives surfers who might swell our adult membership once the lure of the clubhouse is available. Construction there has been delayed due to as yet unresolved issues around what builders warranties are required, but we are still expecting to complete in time for summer 2018. More news when we have it! There’s a gallery below of some of those in attendance on Christmas Day, my apologies to anyone I have missed with my roving lens.
I think most participants on Saturday morning would have shared my thoughts on seeing Mother Meor from the top of Porthmeor Hill on arrival: “pretty small today”. And, like me, they would have been surprised and then delighted that the waves were bigger than expected when we got down to the water, and grew during our sessions into a punchy chest-high out back during the morning. Our junior surfers took to their tasks with great enthusiasm and displayed no little skill. Well done everyone!
Last Sunday saw the seventh annual Swellboard Shootout surf competition organised by St. Ives Surf School on Porthmeor Beach. The event raises funds for Surfers Against Sewage, and this year saints boardriders were honoured to be co-beneficiaries with them of the funds raised over the weekend. Indeed, Sunday was only the culmination of a three day extravaganza which commenced at Porthmeor Beach West on Friday night with an evening of fish tacos, beer and music from Frankie Davies and Ben Warner. Saturday evening saw the open-air film show and curry night at Cohort Hostel, before the teams gathered on Porthmeor Beach on Sunday morning dressed to impress and ready to lay down some swelly-riding magic in the quest to lift the coveted trophy.
A single blog cannot do justice to such an epic day, so this is just the first instalment of a multi-part, cut out and keep pictorial memento of the day’s action. Our banner picture features our august panel of judges in their lofty, secluded majesty.And now we meet the teams:
Coming next : The parade.
After an interminable wait, Porthmeor finally enjoyed a little bump in the ocean on Sunday morning. There were several Saturday kids out catching waves and a goodly number of adults took to the water on swellys or logs to sate their appetites after the recent flat spell. Here’s a few pics of the grown-ups!