Kevin Cody

El Porto delivers perfect conditions for SB Boardriders/Jack’s Surf contest

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Mira Costa team rider Chad Parks finds a clean, open face during the SB Boardriders/Jack’s surf contest Saturday in El Porto. Photos by Kevin Cody

by Kevin Cody

Former U.S. surfing champion Mike Purpus said the season opening South Bay Boardriders/Jack’s Surf contest “looked like Rincon, on a good day.” Purpus has been known to exaggerate, but he wasn’t on Saturday at 45th Street in Manhattan Beach.

Saturday’s surf was arguably the best contest waves in the SBBC contest series 10-year history.

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Mira Costa team surfer Billy Atkinson made Purpus’ argument with an overhead, block-long right that had just one small section he easily floated over.

Judges gave him an 8.6. For the rest of the day, announcers Mark Cole and Mark Silva described any high scoring wave as a “Billy Atkinson.”

The strong, consistent swell was complemented by a light offshore wind and sunny weather that kept Sun Bun rep Jani Lange busy all day.

In addition to the swell, the day was historic for its introduction of the club’s solar powered scoring and announcing system. Long time contest marshal Wright Adaza, who is an electrician,  replaced the contest’s gasoline powered generator with a solar powered battery system mounted on a what looked like a toy wagon with big wheels. The power system worked flawlessly until mid morning, when the batteries ran out of juice. Organizers called a 20-minute break to allow the batteries to recharge.

“We needed more solar panels for the PA. We hadn’t allowed for how much Cole and Silva talk,” Adaza said.

Judges used iPads to record wave scores, which were tabulated instantaneously, thanks to a program worked out by grom Karsten Wanke’s dad and software whiz Todd. The program allowed Cole and Silva  to announce wave scores during the heats, leading to cheers and jeers from the spectators.

Purpus wasn’t called for interference after taking off in front of Daniel Benoit. Charlie Carver was called for interference for taking off in front of Tom Seth, even though Seth was a block south.

The crowd made its displeasure known, prompting Cole to observe, “I know it’s a cliche to say, but I’d hate to be a judge.”

But that didn’t stop the two announcers from entertaining the crowd by arguing what they thought the wave scores should be.

In the first heat of the day, lifeguard Tom Seth caught a wave that brought cheers from the beach and would lead to him victories in both the Men’s Open and Masters (45 and older) divisions.

Charlotte Sabina, star of the recently released feature surf film “Age of Summer,” established her big wave credentials by taking off on bombs and winning the women’s open division.

Open Men   Open Women  
Juliano Uzueli 1 Charlotte Sabina 1
Alex Fry 2 Jamie Wilhelm 2
Parker Browning 3 Payton Smith 3
Tracy Upton 4 Chloe Osborn 4
Tom Seth 5 Bella fredriksz 5
Shane Moseley 6 Alexa Gozlan 6
Juniors   Boys
Alex Fry 1 Karsten Wanke
Billy Atkinson 2 James Maxwell
Ari Engel 3 Ryan Roberts
Parker Browning 4 Philip Barnett
Lucas Horta 5 Sean Yuch
Chad Parks 6 Finn Bertino
Groms   Micro Groms Assist   Micro Groms  
Eilah Nielsen 1 Landon Meza 1 Marlo Harris 1
Dylan Glober 2 Teagan Meza 2 Jake Lowell 2
Mateo Castillo 3 Lucas Flores 3    
Matheus Sperb 4 Liam Bouvet 4    
Luke Lowell 5 Remi Kushner 5    
Kai Carver 6 Tanner Wixom 6    
Junior Women   Masters
Lisa Boos 1 Dave Schaefer
Sofia Rizzi 2 Greg Browning
Elleni Tourigny 3 Mike Osborn
Ava Miller 4 Greg McEwan
    Todd Brooks
    Mark Silva
Legends   Longboard  
Tom Seth 1 Dave Schaefer 1
Jiro Ikeda 2 Shane Geller 2
John Wander 3 Neil Messmer 3
Johnny Hjorth 4 Rodney Buck 4
Tracy Geller 5 David Curry 5
Tom Horton 6 Phillip Barnette 6

The second contest of the seven contest series will be sponsored by Dive N’ Surf and held  Saturday, Jan. 12 at 45th Street in El Porto. To register visit SouthBayBoardRiders.com. ER

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