St Francis Today is back

St Francis Today is back after our short break

St Francis Today is back with the Ed all patched up with a fully rebuilt fuel injection system.  Not quite 100% just yet so we may not publish every day or may sometimes publish a little later or even earlier than our normal 7:30am deadline. Unfortunately the Ed’s sleeping pattern has been a little topsy turvy of late so please bear with us until we are able to establish a new rhythm.

Sadly we missed the Calamari Classic an event that really has such potential to become an even bigger drawcard than it already is and who knows, even reach the popularity of the Knysna Oyster Festival. After all you can do a whole lot more with calamari than with oysters.

Local news erupted during our shut down with unhappy township residents burning and plundering. Certainly they have the right to protest but do they have the right to destroy property. Most concerning however was the mutilation and killing of dogs near the Humansdorp SPCA premises causing SPCA to evacuate the animals to Uitenhage. What sort of person takes out their rage by taking the life of an innocent animal. Barbaric!

But it seems the barbarism spread to a local pub with a bar brawl that would have had Hollywood Western movie directors scrambling for their cameras and English crickter Ben Stokes wondering what all the fuss is about his little skirmish in the early hours of the morning.

Thanks goodness though for some uplifting and positive news with some of South Africa’s finest young  golfers competing in the Vodacom Origins of Golf at St Francis Links.  As always events such as the Origins highlights just what a wonderful facility the Links offers to the Eastern Cape as a tourst magnet. Read Jeff Clause’s newsScotsmen love it in the dunes!

And then we had the All Blacks giving the Boks their biggest thumping in history. Fortunately the Ed was still in ICU when he heard the news so all the necessary life saving equipment was in place lest the shock news cause cardiac arrest.

Interesting too was the closing of the Paradise Beach causeway whilst  the eco people hummed and hawed before  coming to their senses and allowing the river mouth to be breached.  It is human interference that has stopped the estuary from breaching  naturally so surely a helping ‘human’ hand should be acceptable. Read – Kouga gets the go-ahead to breach the Seekoei estuary mouth

But what would the news be without all the stories of corruption and fraud and so we continue picking up the strings as our poloticians continue to wreak havoc with our economy.

A quick note to advertisers, with our shutdown many adverts have not yet be renewed so should you wish to advertise please be sure to contact Colin on 083 554 0796 or at to discuss your advertising needs into the holidays.

Again thanks to all our readers and loyal sponsors for your understancing and many good wishes on social and other media during our shutdown.

Seal Point hosts Billabong Junior Series

Billabong Junior Series chmpions crowned at Seal Point, Cape St Francis

Ford van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie) on his way to clinching the U18 boys title at the Billabong Junior Series pres. by All Aboard Travel at Seal Point on Sunday
Photo: Billabong / Thurtell

The 20th annual champions in the Billabong Junior Series pres. by All Aboard Travel were crowned at Seal Point in Cape St Francis on Sunday after the fourth and final event in 2017 series was completed in highly contestable 1 – 1.5 metre waves and glassy conditions.

Jake Elkington (Kommetjie) and Sophie Bell (Salt Rock) clinched the premier U18 boys’ and girls’ Billabong Junior Series titles which earned them each a coveted trip to the tropical surfing paradise of Bali thanks to All Aboard Travel. The same pair also topped the World Surf League (WSL) Africa Junior regional rankings lists and are the 2017 WSL Africa Junior champions.

The U16 boys’ and girls’ series titles were won by Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay) and Tayla de Coning (East London) respectively despite neither of them winning any of the four events. Ceara Knight (Cape Town) and Daniel Emslie (East London) each secured two event victories on their way to the U14 girls’ and boys’ series titles while Kyra Bennie (Vredehoek), the U12 boys’ series champion, won three of the four events in 2017

The seven finals run at Seal Point on Sunday produced phenomenal surfing with Ford van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie) capturing his first WSL Junior Qualifying Series (JQS) men’s event victory after defeating Calvin Goor (Salt Rock). The lanky 18-year-old Capetonian posted a near perfect score of 9.0 out of ten plus three rides in the seven point range, the best of which was a 7.87, and his heat total of 16.87 left Goor still needing a 9.76 when time ran out.

Former Jeffreys Bay local Kai Woolf, now competing under the New Zealand flag, won both the JQS (U18) women’s event and the U16 girls’ division, delivering heat totals in the mid-teens in both finals. Woolf finished ahead of Taghiti Gericke (Wilderness) in the one-on-one JQS final while Olivia Izzard (La Lucia), Summer Sutton (Kommetjie) and Tayla de Coning (East London) challenged her throughout the U16 final.

Visiting French teenager George Pittar won the U16 boys’ title, relegating last year’s U14 boys’ winner Tide Lee Ireland (Durban) to the runner-up spot while Luke Thompson (Durban) and Zoe Steyn (East London) dominated today’s U14 boys and girls finals respectively.

Brazilian Ryan Kanailo was outstanding in the U12 boys’ final, earning a near perfect heat total of 18.70 out of 20 that left all three of his opponents needing to replace both their highest scoring rides in order to overtake him.

The highly anticipated VonZipper Air Show was staged after the finals and provided Calvin Goor (Salt Rock) with the chance to shine as he clinched the R2,000 winner-takes-all  prize purse for landing the best aerial manoeuvre.

Full results for all divisions can be found at and the heat scores, images and more JQS U18 men’s and women’s events can be found at

The Billabong Junior Series pres. by All Aboard Travel is supported by BOS, VonZipper, Zigzag, Surfing South Africa and the World Surf League.

Billabong Junior Series pres. by All Aboard Travel

2017 Final Series Rankings

U18 Boys
1st       Jake Elkington (Kommetjie)
2nd     Ford van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie)
3rd      Max Elkington (Kommetjie)

U18 Girls
1st       Sophie Bell (Salt Rock)
2nd     Summer Sutton (Kommetjie)
3rd      Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga)

U16 Boys
1st       Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay)
2nd     Saxton Randall (Durban)
3rd      York van Jaarsveldt (Kommetjie)

U16 Girls
1st       Tayla de Coning (East London)
2nd     Kayla Nogueira (uMhlanga)
3rd      Summer Sutton (Kommetjie)

U14 Boys
1st       Daniel Emslie (East London)
2nd     Mitch du Preez (East London)
3rd      Luke Thompson (Durban)

U14 Girls
1st       Ceara Knight (Cape Town)
2nd     Zoe Steyn (East London)
3rd      Caroline Brown (Cape Town)

U12 Boys
1st       Kyra Bennie (Vredehoek)
2nd     C-Jay Posthumus (Port Elizabeth)
3rd      Kai Hall (Durban)

Billabong Junior Series pres. by All Aboard Travel

Event #4 of 4 – Seal Point – Final Results

U/18 Boys
1          Ford Van Jaarsveld (Kommetjie) R8 000
2          Calvin Goor (Salt Rock) R4 000
=3        Luke Malherbe (East London) R2 500
=3        Mitch du Preez (East London) R2 500

U/18 Girls
1          Kai Woolf (Jeffreys Bay) R4 000
2          Taghiti Gericke (Wilderness) R2 000
=3        Summer Sutton (Kommetjie) R1 000
=3        Tayla de Coning (East London) R1 000

U/16 Boys
1          George Pittar (France) R2 000
2          Tide Lee Ireland (Durban) R900
3          Ryan Lightfoot (Jeffreys Bay) R600
4          Angelo Faulkner (Jeffreys Bay) R500

U/16 Girls
1          Kai Woolf (Jeffreys Bay) R2 000
2          Olivia Izzard (La Lucia) R900
3          Summer Sutton (Kommetjie) R600
4          Tayla de Coning (East London) R500

U/14 Boys
1          Luke Thompson (Durban) R2 000
2          Mitch du Preez (East London) R900
3          Daniel Emslie (East London) R600
4          Nate Spalding (Durban) R500

U/14 Girls
1          Zoe Steyn (East London) R2 000
2          Lhea Johnston (East London) R900
3          Caroline Brown (Cape Town) R600
4          Jesse Powell (Scottburgh) R500

U/12 Boys
1          Ryan Kainalo (Brazil) R1 000
2          Kai Hall (Durban) R450
3          Kyra Bennie (Vredehoek) R300
4          Nathan Plomaritis (Port Elizabeth) R250

VonZipper Airshow – R2 000
Calvin Goor (Salt Rock)


More information and images are available at Billabong South Africa: Billabong Women’s South Africa:

Hashtag: #BillabongJNR

Whale set free

Whale set free from ocean bed

Following a report from a passing ship on Sunday morning reporting a whale in distress 40-nautical miles off-shore between Plettenberg BAy and Knysna. A South African Whale Disentanglement Network (SAWDN) volunteer response team accompanied NSRI lettenberg Bay sea rescue raft Leonard Smith luanched from Plettenberg Bay and NSRI Knysna sea rescue craft Colourpress Rescuer launch as back-up to the Leonard Smith.

Both sea rescue craft arrived at the GPS co-ordinates (provided by the skipper of the passing vessel) at the same time at 13h50 where SAWDN volunteers found a juvenile approximately 14 meter Humpback whale anchored to the sea bed with fishing rope around its tail and a single floatation buoy.

The SAWDN volunteers got to work and the line around the tail was cut which freed the whale from the anchored entrapment and then the floatation buoy was cut. All lines and the buoy cut free were recovered.

The cutting operation took 20 minutes before the whale was freed from the rope and buoys and the whale swam off confidently and we are confident that the operation has been successful and the whale appears to be healthy.

This is the furthest out to sea that a SAWDN operation has been conducted.


Whale set free off Plettenberg Bay – Picture SAWDN

Press reslease Craig Lambinon