JBay Winterfest: Big Wins, Big Upsets at the Corona Open JBay  

Jordy Smith takes to the air © Kody McGregor

Saturday offered an excellent day of surfing at the Corona Open JBay, as perfect four-to-six foot waves poured down the point all day for the best surfers in the world. With a strong and powerful swell it was decided to run overlapping heats, so that all could utilize the best conditions.

Jordy Smith was the first surfer to get a wave this morning and went straight to the air, in the opening heat against Soli Bailey from Australia. Jordy surfed a good heat, despite hitting his head while pulling into a barrel, needing a few stitches to sew it closed.

Wildcard surfer Mikey February from Cape Town came up against two times event winner and defending champion Filipe Toledo from Brazil. The Brazilian had the heat all stitched up by the time the clock started ticking out, but Mikey picked up one more great looking wave and pulled into a clean barrel but unfortunately was clipped by the wave, and was knocked out of the competition.

Julian Wilson from Australia was a surprise upset, getting beaten by powerful Hawaiian surfer Ezekial Lau. Wilson is a perennial standout at Supertubes, and his early eliminations will add to his woes on a fast-slipping world title hunt.

Similarly last years’ semifinalist Wade Carmichael was eliminated by Hawaiian maestro Sebastian Zietz. Picking off a great set wave, Zietz got a great tube ride before performing a number of great turns for the highest wave score of the day with 9.07 points out of a possible ten.

Kelly Slater is always a crowd favourite and surfed a powerful heat against Ciao Ibelli from Brazil, and at the end it was the 11 times world champion who came out on top and advanced to the round of 16.

Media enquiries:  –  Craig Jarvis  –  info@craigjarvis.co.za  –  082 376 4443 


As part of the JBay Winterfest, Monday 15 July will see a book launch of John McCarthy’s The Sexy Ugly Beautifuls book at 6 pm at the Corona Main Bar at the Corona Open JBay. Described thus: The Sexy Ugly Beautifuls is a rock ‘n’ roll collection of ocean infused adventures; so named after the colourful characters and exotic destinations John discovered in his global quest to ride the perfect wave.”

The book launch will include some readings from McCarthy and books for sale afterwards, with R50 from every copy sold donated to The Supertubes Foundation.


JBay Winterfest is also proud to host an evening with Britt Merrick on Tuesday 16 July at 6pm at the Corona Main Bar at the Corona Open JBay. Britt, son of legendary Al Merrick, will be showing a short movie on the Channel Islands surfboard making processes, followed by a Q & A with Merrick.  


The Corona Open JBay is a wheelchair friendly event and parking is available in Pepper Street, which is right at the event site. All vehicles with the proper disabled accreditation will be allowed access to Pepper Street which will ensure the event is wheelchair friendly. JOC co-ordinator Brenton Williams said that event security has been alerted to allow access to vehicles with the Wheelchair Parking Disc.

Williams can be contacted on 083 5496795 should there be any problems trying to access the Corona Open JBay event site.

More information on the JBay Winterfest can be found at www.jbaywinterfest.com  –  The JBay Winterfest is sponsored by Kouga Municipality and Howler – cashless event solutions.

Media enquiries:  –  Craig Jarvis  –  info@craigjarvis.co.za  –  082 376 4443 


Suspension bridge collapses

Kouga Municipality would like to call on residents of St Francis Bay and Cape St Francis to use water very sparingly. The water supply to the towns’ reservoirs has been interrupted following the collapse of a suspension bridge carrying a section of the main line earlier today.

A damage assessment has been done and a contractor will start repairs on Monday. 

The reservoirs are being monitored and levels are currently stable. It is, however, uncertain how long repairs will take and there is a risk that the reservoirs could dry up. 

Everyone is, therefore, urged to use as little water as possible to make the available supply last as long as is possible. 

Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience. 

Media Release – Laura-Leigh –  Kouga Municipality – Media Liaison Officer