Almost 150 competitors are set to take part in the 2018 NSW Board Riding Championships on the Northern Beaches this weekend.
Thirty-eight surf clubs from Cudgen Headland in Northern NSW through to Broulee Surfers on the Far South Coast will be represented at the 2018 Midford NSW Board Riding Championships.
Broulee’s competitor Darren Browning will compete in the 50-59 Male Board Riding division.
The event is making its return to one of surfing’s most iconic and historically significant breaks, North Narrabeen beach, after being held at Birubi Point near Port Stephens last season.
Prior to 2015, the NSW Board Riding Championships was held as part of the overall State Championships, but in an effort to allow more athletes to participate, it was decided a stand-alone competition was required.
This new format has been well received with the athletes out to make the most of a bright start to spring and after a long, flat winter, gives them the opportunity to earn bragging rights as the best surfer in their clubs.
The championships are open to athletes aged 13 to over 70, with competition to be conducted in a format of 20-minute heats followed by semi-finals and finals as required.
A casual glance at the program will turn up a number of familiar names particularly in the Masters Divisions.
Anthony Carroll and Ryan Clark of Bondi Rescue fame will be flying the flag for Bronte SLSC as they have for many years. Maroubra SLSC will be fielding a strong contingent which includes Andrew O’Sullivan, a former Australian champion surfer.
NSW Surf Sports Manager Rob Pidgeon is looking forward to the event.
“It’s an exciting opportunity for our lifesavers to show off their surfing skills, and I know they’re all looking forward to the challenge,” he said.
“Like everyone we will be watching the conditions with interest and are optimistic of a light swell continuing throughout the competition which will give the competitors the best chance of catching a few waves.”
Early forecast models suggest that the conditions are looking good for Friday, holding at two-to-three feet on a light southeasterly wind swell with light offshore winds for the duration of the period, however expect winds to swing northeasterly into the afternoons as the weekend progresses.
Mr Pidgeon also praised the hosts for being so accommodating and working closely with the local North Narrabeen Board Riders Club to deliver this event.
“North Narrabeen has been extremely supportive through the whole lead-in process and are looking forward to hosting the State Championships after the frustration of having to relocate the Best of the Best Surf Boat Interbranch Championships earlier this year,” he said.
“The hard work has been done and now all that is left is to hit the surf on Friday. It’s shaping up to be an amazing competition.”
The 2018 Midford NSW Board Riding Championships will be held at North Narrabeen from Friday, September 7 to Sunday, September 9. Opening heats will get underway from 7:30am.