World Class Waves for Day 2 of EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira

PRAIA DE RIBEIRA D’ILHAS, Ericeira / Portugal (Wednesday, September 25, 2018) – The QS10,000 EDP Billabong Pro Ericeira resumed in solid six foot plus surf at the famed righthand point break of Ribeira d’Ilhas and completed ??? heats of Round 2 on the second day of competition.

Pictured: Chris Zaffis (AUS) was one of the unexpected standouts on Day 2 in Portugal. – Credit: © WSL / Poullenot

Whether pure luck or ocean knowledge, the difference was made by surfers who found vertical sections in the lineup. The swell pushed overnight and well overhead sets washed through, offering a pretty flat shoulder whereas some of the insiders opened up perfectly with big sections to hit.

Peru’s Lucca Mesinas (PER) was the first surfer to really capitalize on those maybe shorter waves but with a steeper face. And things didn’t get better for Elite Top 34 members as Mesinas started by eliminating Rookie of the Year contender Deivid Silva (BRA) in the opening heat today.

Matthew McGillivray (ZAF) and Samuel Pupo (BRA) teamed up in the following heat to eliminate Ezekiel Lau (HAW) and Caio Ibelli (BRA), two CT athletes with a decent track record on big open rights.

“It’s picked up so much it’s bombing out there and I was stoked to get a couple,” McGillivray said. “It’s tricky to find the right ones but when you do it’s pretty sick. I was trying to find waves that had a lip and bowled up cause there are a lot that are just flat and hard to score on. I had an up-and-down year before Europe but my result in Pantin gave me a lot of confidence and I hope I can grab a few more points down here.”

Ian Crane (USA) showed goofy foots can do the job as well, as he lit up the rights of Ribeira d’Ilhas to eliminate Jesse Mendes (BRA) from competition in Round 2.

“From here all you can see is whitewater but in the lineup it makes more sense, it’s actually really fun out there,” Crane said. “Every wave looks the same when  you’re taking off but you can get one that just lines up more and I’m happy I surfed a couple well.”

World No. 5 Italo Ferreira (BRA) was the first Championship Tour surfer to survive the treacherous matchups of Round 2 although he had to settle for second place behind former World Junior Champion Lucas Silveira (BRA).

A relatively unknown surfer from Australia posted the day’s upset in eliminating  World No. 6 Kanoa Igarashi (JPN) in the following heat. Chris Zaffis (AUS) chose a completely different strategy from most surfers, distancing himself from the lengthy rides to select big closeouts. He managed to fit two big turns on each of his best scoring rides and posted an incredible 16.00 point total, the highest of the entire event so far.

Pictured: Frederico Morais (PRT) advanced with big scores out of Round 2 in Ericeira. – Credit: © WSL / Poullenot

“I just waited for the biggest waves and tried to hit it a couple times and I’m stoked it paid off,” Zaffis said. “I’m from Angourie so I enjoy a good righthand point break for sure, and I felt very comfortable out there. I’m riding a step-up, a 6’1 Dylan Longbottom surfboard, he’s definitely got experience in bigger waves and that board worked really really well.”

The whole Ericeira area lit up around 12 o’clock when the Portuguese superstar Frederico Morais (PRT) made his way to the lineup. Soccer match-like chants actually covered PA announcements as local fans supported their favorite surfer in the event. ‘Kikas’ delivered with a first wave caught well up the point for a 7.67 and the lead early on.

“It was a really good start for him,” confirmed Richard ‘Dog’ Marsh, his coach. “He really wanted to sit a bit further out the point than everyone else had been, he felt like his local knowledge was going to get him in the spot. That was his risk, I gave him 10 minutes to pull a 7+ off and he got it in the first 3 minutes so I’m stoked.”

The powerful regular foot quickly backed that score up and continued to build to eventually take out his first heat in Ericeira with a solid 14.47 combined total to advance into Round 3. 

“It’s going to be a really tough comp everyone is surfing really well,” Morais said. “The ultimate goal is always to win, especially here but any big points will go a long way in my re-qualification and to be solid for the next three events. Either way I’m just super happy to be here competing at home with the support of the Portuguese crowds.”

Everything paled in comparison excitement-wise after that but big scores kept dropping all afternoon as waves fired down the Ribeira d’Ilhas point. Sheldon Simkus (AUS), Beyrick De Vries (ZAF) and Imaikalani Devault (HAW) all posted excellent numbers, but while the first two advanced with their 8+ scores on the board, the Hawaiian could never back up his incredible 9.40 and was eliminated in third place behind De Vries and World No. 22 Yago Dora (BRA) who mounted a last moment comeback.

Evan Geiselman (USA) went all out in the lip of a meaty set wave to post the second 9 point ride after Devault’s but the story turned out happier for the Floridian who advanced through Heat 19. In his heat, it was QS No. 4 Jorgann Couzinet (FRA) who took the win with an incredible 16.80 total, overtaking Simkus for the highest of the event after Day 2.

Surfers and event officials will be back at 8 a.m Thursday morning to re-assess conditions and decide of the third day’s schedule of competition.

Speeding is okay (if you are in a hurry to go shopping)

Collo’s Blog

The subject of speeding has filled these pages on more than one occasion and possibly we should stop writing about it for I was informed on Tuesday morning that locals are allowed to speed as we are only a small village.

The occasion was travelling to St Francis Bay from Cape St Francis mid Tuesday morning I was passed by the driver of a Nissan SUV. Travelling at the prescribed 40kph and possibly exceeding it by two or three k’s along St Francis Way I was passed, as I cleared the speed hump just before The Hope Crescent. Now to pass someone travelling at the outer limits of the speed restriction is breaking the law in my book. Crossing a solid white line to pass a vehicle is a further transgression, both penalisable with a hefty fine.

Getting rather a fright by a car suddenly alongside me I paid no attention to try and make out the driver and long before I could note the registration, other than it was an EC registration, the vehicle was too far ahead. My immediate reaction was to hoot, flash my lights and hold up four fingers indicating (hopefully) tat the driver would realise I was indicating it was a 40 zone. Accepting possibly the driver was a doctor or a member of NSRI and there must be an emergent I relaxed and continued to the R330 at the prescribed 40kph

Joining R330 and increasing my speed to around 100kph I was surprised at how soon I caught up to the  offender particularly as he (I presumed it was a he) was surely travelling to an emergency having had to pass me in Cape St francis. In fact at one pont I had to slow slightly rather than having to pass.

Both of us turned down Homestead and as I always do, I turned into College Road with my destination being Spar. As I turned I noticed the SUV still running ahead of me still suddenly made a U-Turn and chased after me following me into the Spar car park. I must say the adrenalin was pumping a just little when the SUV pulled into the parking next to me for I still couldn’t make out the driver I expected a Mike Schutte look-a-like to emerge. Preparing myself to make an early entry into oblivion or at least another broken nose I was surprised as I started walking towards Spar that I was in fact being hunted down by an elderly woman and not Mike Schutte’s clone.

Well I should not have relaxed for the verbal attack was probably what Manchester United players faced when Fergie balled them out after a miserable performance. It seems as previously stated those living in Cape St Francis are allowed to speed and in any case she informed me she was in a hurry and allowed to speed. But admonishing her for speeding wasn’t the problem, it was that I had the audacity to hoot at her and give her a fright for, as she told me, it could have caused her to have an accident. Imagine that! Her speeding and crossing a solid white line would not have been the cause but rather because I hooted.

Fortunately she didn’t break my nose or send me into oblivion although she was annoyed enough to take a swipe at me and I apologized but pointed out that she had in fact broken the law, Hopefully whatever special was being offered at Spar that caused her emergency was still on offer by the time she got to the shop for I noticed when I finished my shopping she was still parked alongside me.

Collo!

Local Activists organise Gender Based Violence Protest

The atrocious attack, rape and murder of 19 year old student, Uyinene Mryetwana on 24 August 2019, was the tipping point and women throughout South Africa stood together and asked, #AMINEXT.

More hideous attacks on women and children followed in the awful weeks that followed with 19-year old theology student, Jessica Hess, and her 85 year old grandfather murdered in their flat on 30th August and on 3 September, four children were killed by their father in response to his estranged wife initiating of divorce proceedings. 

The response and outpouring of heartbreak, anguish, grief, anger and desperation grew, throughout the country, on university campuses, on social media. A Facebook, a group called South African Women Fight Back, was started and quickly grew to over 200 000 members in less than two weeks and continues to grow, overwhelming the administrators and leading to a tidal wave of women sharing their painful experiences at the hands of men.  Soon women on this group began a list of the names of all of those who have been victims of gender based violence.  SA People Online took up the cudgel and published this list, which continues to be updated, as more of the names of victims (and survivors) are shared

This group encouraged co-ordinated and encouraged protests around the country to be held on 14 September 2019.  The gatherings were to raise the issue of gender based violence (GBV) and to pay respect to those women who have lost their lives or survived this GBV, as well as the lost and nameless.

And so a call from local activists Sheena Ruth of St Francis Bay and Nozuko Ntshota of Sea Vista among otherscalled on residents of St Francis Bay, Sea Vista and Cape St Francis to join hands at 11:00am at the circle at the entrance to St Francis Bay on the 14th September. And hundreds of local women, and a good few men, from St Francis Bay, Sea Vista and Cape St Francis all gathered at the entrance circle to St Francis Bay to show their support for the movement against Gender Based Violence.

Speaker after speaker condemned those me who abused, beat, raped and murdered woman and children as the crowd shouted their agreement for harsher jail sentences and no bail for perpetrators.

Most serious about the violence against women and children is the justice system itself. Many are dismissed and so often those that do result in a conviction, the sentence is no more than a slap on the wrist. Could it be that many of the magistrates presiding over these cases are in often male and thus don’t quite understand the emotional violation the woman or child suffers? Maybe a solution would be that only female magistrates / judges preside in GBV related cases and that they be given the latitude to hand down the harsh sentences that our President spoke of when addressing parliament on this subject.

A truly moving event that we can only hope the call will , if not stop Gender Based Violence (GBV) at least reduce the incidents and see those that ignore the call don orange overalls for life.

In Xhosa culture, apparently when it rains before or during an important event, it is seen as a blessing – icamagu livumile – the spirits agree.  It rained on Friday night before the gathering of those who attended, all united across language, cultural, racial, sexual orientation, religious, political and spatial boundaries of our village.  

Article edited in part from an article submitted by Sheena Ruth, of of the activists responsible for organising the event