2016 Bodysurfing — High School Age Boys & Girls excel in Oceanside

August 22, 2016

The 40th Annual World Bodysurfing Championships were a success, much as the previous 39 editions, with ages 12 thru 65+ competing in various age groups, both men & women.

Preliminaries were held Saturday the 20th of August with the Semi-Finals and Finals on Sunday the 21st. This short blog focuses on the Men’s Age 15-17 competitors, i.e. Boys High School Age, an important input to the KAI~Sports Bodysurfing All-America list.

The 30 young men in the Prelims were whittled down to the top 12 for the Semis, featured earlier heat winners Jack McCloskey, Dylan Delaney and Jonathan Foster, along with last year’s finalists Wyatt Bates and Dylan Biggerstaff; rounding out the field was Graydon Church, Jake Keville, Sean Cunningham, Timothy McCauley, Tyler Sande, Nathan Swank and Augie Cunningham. (b~note: last year finalists Paul Grieumard and Jack Hayward failed to advance.)

The top three in each Semi, scoring tightly between 48 and 54 points, were McCloskey, Biggerstaff, Bates, Delaney, Sande, and (Augie) Cunningham — the tight scores of which would mean a promising Final!

In the first five minutes of the Final, the boys fought their way out through the surf, scoring small waves, but trying to get into position for the bigger and higher scoring wave chances.

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Spectators on the Pier shout ‘outside’ as the bigger lines start to form…

Then, the middle five minutes provided the best waves of the heat.

Augie Cunningham was in perfect position in the first outside wave. “I felt good throughout the heat. I had made finals at the US Open Huntington Beach Bodysurfing  competition, so knew with a few good waves, would have a better chance of scoring high enough.” (b~note: although 6th in Huntington in the regular Bodysurfing, Augie won the prestigious Paipo Handboard event!)

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Augie Cunningham grabs the first larger ‘outside’ wave.

According to Dylan Biggerstaff, “Augie was a little inside of me. I knew he would get that wave. I was out about 20 yards further, just aligned with Ruby’s Restaurant on the Pier. The outside waves were stacking up. I may have gotten the biggest wave of the day, so when I took off, I went for it. I caught a nice ‘chandelier section,’ let it cascade over me, then punched through it to continue inside as well, so I tried to make it the longest ride of the day as well.”

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Dylan Biggerstaff slides into the ‘chandelier section’ of a wave.

Overall, great waves, great day! Congratulations to the heats of  Semi-Finals and Finals!

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Bodysurfers Augie Cunningham and Dylan Biggerstaff.

For the complete results of the Worlds, click on this link:

http://www.worldbodysurfing.org/results

Also, for complete listings of Bodysurfing All-Americans, click on:

http://kaisports.org/surfFiles/xBodysurfingLinkToSelectionsPage.htm

(b~note: next seasons’ plan is to focus on Girls High School Age in a future blog.)

 

 

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2016 USLA National Championships

August 15, 2016
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Preparing for the start of the Rescue Paddle Event

The four-day United States Lifesaving Assocation (USLA) conducted their 29th annual individual and team championships from August 10-13 in Hermosa Beach, California. It was the first time since 2013 that the contests were held in Southern California, the last one being in Manhattan Beach.

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Rescue Paddle finish

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Solberg, Kemp

In the final individual scoring event, the Paddle Board Rescue, Jenna Solberg and Coral Kemp, shown above and left images, took runner-up finish to Kelsey O’Donnell and Diane Graner-Gallas in the “A Final.” The multiple event points amassed by Solberg, including 1st in the Open IronWoman, 2nd in both the Board and Surf races, and 3rd in the Rescue Swim race, vaulted her to the top as the US Women’s Open Lifeguard All-Around Champion over rookie Kelsey Cummings. (B~note: Cummings was in this Rescue Paddle event “B Final” with Tiana Pugliese, both of who’ll surely be looked to in the future for high-points.)

 

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Graner-Gallas, Kemp, O’Donnell, Solberg

Recent past individual US Open Lifeguarding All-Around Champions include O’Donnell (2014), Kemp (2013), and Graner-Gallas (multiple previous years).

On the team side, the Los Angeles County Surf Lifesaving Association (LACO SLSA) is back on top of the national scene recapturing the USLA National Team Championship as well. Hats off to the Men & Women of LACO and runners-up California State Parks!